A Guide To Caring For Aging Parents

Caring for an aging parent can take both a physical and emotional toll – but can also be incredibly rewarding. Knowing how to best prepare for and approach this situation will alleviate the stress you may be feeling.

Did you know…

  • Seniors are projected to make up ¼ of the population by 2036 (Source: Globe & Mail)
  • 23% of adults (ages 45-64) are caring for an aging adult (Source: Pew Research)
  • Of those who are care-givers – 43% missed work, 15% cut down their hours, 10% passed a promotion (Source: Statistics Canada)
  • 88% of adults say helping an aging parent is “rewarding” / 12 say its “stressful” (Source: Pew Research)

 

The Impact On Families

Aging can be difficult for everyone – emotionally, relationship-wise & financially!

  • Emotionally:
    • Adult children may feel: sadness, fear, guilt, exhaustion, frustrated, uncertainty, resentment
    • Aging parents may feel: frustration, worry (to be cared “for”), helpless, controlled
  • Relationship-wise
    • MANY decisions need to get made which can cause a lot of conflict between adult siblings and aging parents (Ex. Who cares for their aging parents? / Ex. Is one sibling doing more of the work? / Ex. Who pays for the care?)
  • Financially
    • It can cause an enormous amount of financial stress and burden BOTH on adult children & aging parents

 

4 Tips On How To Prepare & Navigate

Tip #1: Talk Casually About Your Needs – EARLY!

  • Start the conversation, if possible, when parents are healthy
  • Ask them their needs / goals / desires
  • Talk openly with siblings (so everyone is hearing the needs / desires together)

 

Tip #2: Assess Their Needs & Pay Attention

  • When you go to their place, assess their needs / pay attention, to make sure they are taking good care of themselves!
  • Assess 5 key areas: Home + Meals + Hygiene + Social Interaction + Mobility

  

Tip #3: Ask Their Opinion, Share & Discuss

  • Ask them what are their needs & then share with them your thoughts
  • Discuss TOGETHER to find solutions … do not take over! What is the best for EVERYONE (helps with the feelings of guilt/adult children and control / aging parents)!

 

Tip #4: Think Creatively For Support

  • Think about ALL options for the next chapter!
  • What is best for everyone?
  • In-home caregiver | Hire drivers to take to appointments | Assisted Living Community | Live With You In Suite / Apartment / Room

 

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