As we age, there are certain things that we simply can’t go on doing on our own anymore. And as hard as that is to come to terms with, in order to stay safe, this is a reality of life that must be faced. However, many elderly people prefer to live independently rather than living in a facility like a nursing home. While this option might make you as their caregiver more nervous, if it’s feasible, you can make this option work out for both of you. To show you how, here are three tips for helping your elderly loved one live independently.
Know What’s Safe and What Isn’t
Before you can say that this option will work, you have to determine if it’s going to be safe for your loved one to stay on their own. While it might be more convenient for someone to always be there who could help your loved one at a moment’s notice, not all elderly people necessarily need this. But if there are vital things that your loved one can’t do on their own, you may need to put your foot down about independent living not being an option. And although this can be a difficult conversation, Jacqueline Marcell, a contributor to AgingCare.com, writes that you shouldn’t let your loved one’s pleas or demands sway your judgement about what is safe.
Prepare The Home Correctly
Once you’ve decided that independent living is right for you, it’s time to prepare the home so it’s ready for living alone. To best do this, you’re going to want to ensure that anything that could be a cause for concern is eliminated. According to Bonnie Lawrence, a contributor to PBS.org, this could mean installing new lighting, removing large pieces of furniture, or even moving to a new place that’s all one level. The point of the preparation is to make sure the home is as safe as possible, so analyze the space your loved one will be living in and make it the safest it can be.
Get Essentials Delivered
Even if your loved one is able to take care of themselves on a day-to-day basis, some things that would take them outside the home might be hard for them to manage. If this is the case, you may want to consider setting up services that can deliver essentials to their home for them. Geeta Nayyar, a doctor and contributor to the Huffington Post, writes that things like groceries and medicine can both be delivered if necessary. Also, you may want to consider hiring people to perform other services like cleaning or lawn care so that added dangers of those tasks aren’t put on your aging loved one.
If you have a loved one who insists on living independently, use the tips mentioned above to make sure this arrangement is done as safely as possible.