Preparing to Live with an Elderly Parent
There are plenty of options available if your elderly parent isn’t able to live completely independently anymore. It might be that they need specialist care for dementia or something less intensive such as help with doing household chores. It could also be that they live alone, and have begun to feel isolated and depressed after the passing of a life partner. Whatever the reason, there are many options, but if you’re not keen on the idea of your elderly parent moving to a retirement home, you might have thought about moving them in with you instead. This can be a wonderful choice, but it’s important to think it through carefully before you commit to this, as it will require a lot of change for you.
Below are some things to think about to help you to prepare for living with an elderly parent.
Talk to Your Family First
Before you move forward with these plans, first discuss it with your partner and your kids if this is who you live with. The house is their living space as well, so it’s important to make sure that their thoughts and feelings regarding the situation have been considered. You might also want to discuss this with your siblings or other relatives who are close to you as you might need their support at times, even if your senior parent is living with you and not them.
Consider Medical Care
Another thing you need to be mindful of is whether your parent needs medical assistance as well. Managing medication is something you can help them with, but for more complex conditions, you might need the services of a nurse who can come and visit your parent a few times a week or daily to give them the right care. This will also help to give you a bit of a break from looking after your parent as well. If they do require a lot of care, perhaps moving them to a specialist home would be a better option. On the other hand, if your parent is healthy enough and you will not need professional medical help, you still might want to consider getting CPR training, just to be on the safe side.
If your parent uses a wheelchair or struggles with mobility, you will need to think of ways you can modify your home to accommodate this. Having a mobility lift installed in your home could help them access the higher floors in your property, and this will be a must if there is no room on the ground floor for their bedroom or toilet access. You can see some great examples of the various types of mobility lifts available for both interior and exterior use at Terry Lifts. Other modifications you might need to make at home are installing support bars, shower seats, wheelchair ramps, and widening doorways.
Create a Private Space for Them
Finally, while your parents might be looking forward to moving in with you and spending more time with your family, there will be times when they will crave some privacy and a sense of independence. If possible, consider creating a private space for them by turning part of the house into a mini apartment. Give them an en suite bathroom and perhaps a kitchenette if they can still safely use kitchen utensils.
There is a lot to think about before you commit to moving an elderly parent into your home, but above are some of the main considerations you’ll need to make to help you decide if that is the right option for you and your parent.