Your dad is getting older and wants to stay in his home, but there are things you’ve noticed he cannot do. As you try to help him balance his desire for independent living with his safety, you’re interested in getting him set up with elder care services. Here’s what you need to do.
Ask Your Dad About His Routine
Go over your dad’s daily routine. When does he get up? Does he shower first or have his coffee, tea, juice, and breakfast before his shower? If he has a dog, does he have to walk the dog before he can do anything else?
Once he’s showered and dressed, what does he do next? Does he like to go for a walk or is he afraid to go alone? Does he have errands to run or did he have to stop driving? Who helps him if he can’t drive?
Find Out What Medications He Takes and Why
What medications does your dad take? Why does he take them? He may be taking beta-blockers for his blood pressure. Those are important, so it’s essential that he never misses a dose.
Is he often forgetting to take a pill? Does he avoid some of his medications because he doesn’t like how they make him feel? Are his medications too expensive, leading him to take them every other day instead of daily? This all needs to be addressed through conversations with your dad’s doctor and pharmacist as there may be alternatives.
Talk to the Family About His Situation
Gather the rest of the family and ask for their input. When they’ve stopped by to visit, do they find things are not ideal? Your dad’s out of medications and has to rush order a refill or he has no groceries. Is the house clean or a disorganized mess?
Create a List of Your Dad’s Needs
Look around your dad’s home at the things he can do on his own and what he struggles to complete. For example, you stop by and find his hamper overflowing. Ask him why. If he feels unsafe going to his laundry room with a heavy hamper, it’s time to arrange to have someone do his laundry for him.
Build a Calendar of Care
Once you know how often you and your siblings can stop by to help your dad, create a calendar of care. Have people sign up for the days they’re free and tasks they’re available to help him with. Look through that calendar for gaps in coverage.
Those gaps are the areas where you need to arrange elder care services. A caregiver can come by and help your dad complete the chores on his list.
Call an Elder Care Agency
It’s time to talk to an expert in elder care. Go over your dad’s daily routine, the things he can and cannot do independently, and the frequency of his need for help. An elder care advisor can help you arrange the care he needs.