long-distance senior care

Going the Distance: How to Care for a Senior Parent Who Lives Far Away

One of the only things more challenging than caring for your senior parents is caring for your senior parents who live far away from you. Long distances present their own unique set of obstacles!

Thankfully, Home Care Assistance is going to help you handle the logistics of long-distance senior care. Take a look at our advice below and get started helping your elderly parents from a distance.

Assess the situation and know your options.

In order to provide the best care possible for your long-distance senior parents, start by assessing their situation. What is their state of health? What’s their living situation like? You may even need to gather some of this information from their current physicians, or they may have a caregiver who can give you frequent updates. Another good idea is to get the whole family together and outline who is going to be responsible for what. As an example, if you have a sibling who lives nearby the parents, they may be tasked with checking in on them on a daily or weekly basis.

Get organized and automated.

The next step is to go ahead and automate as many of your parent’s affairs as possible – start with items like automated bill pay, and auto-renewal services for newspapers, prescriptions refills, and grocery deliveries.

Think of this as if you are running a second household! Most importantly, think about what tasks YOU would want to be automated for yourself if you sometimes forgot about them or were unable to handle them.

Keep in touch.

Although it may seem obvious, we highly encourage you to try and visit your parents in person as much as you can. This is the best way for you to physically assess their well-being, check for anything else they may need, and to spend time with them. If you have nearby friends or family, and you are unable to visit your parents as much as you would like, consider encouraging some of these people to visit your parents in your absence.

If neither of the above is a good option for you, don’t worry! Technology these days is very advanced and useful for keeping in touch long-distance. If your parents are on the tech-savvy side, make sure they have the ability to stay social with you through phone calls, video chats, text messages, or email. For the parents who don’t have a great grasp on technology, ask their caregiver to share their logs and plans with you online on a daily basis, or see if they can help your senior make a video call to you.

If you need help developing a senior care plan for your senior parents, Home Care Assistance is ready to help you! Give us a call to schedule your consultation and learn about your long-distance senior care options.

senior care socialization

Connecting Generations: How Young People are Helping Older Adults Stay Social

It’s no secret that some of the younger generations, like iGen, Generations Z and X, and Millennials all seem to have the upper hand when it comes to using technology. Older adults, however, can often get left behind on their understanding of technological advancements. That’s where these younger generations come in! Those with parents or grandparents in senior care can teach them how they can stay social, too.

You can start by showing your senior the value of technology. Demonstrate how easy it is to video call a family member you haven’t spoken to in a while, or to reply to an important in email in under 10 minutes! These demonstrations will help them understand and appreciate the value of technology.

Your senior can make better use of technology when you help them understand the language. Most older adults in a senior care program probably do not know the terms and phrases associated with Facebook or Instagram, so using them won’t be helpful. Instead, break things down into an easy language that they can understand and use analogies they will be familiar with.

Don’t rush your teachings, just take it slow. Just because you can send a text in 10 seconds doesn’t mean your senior will be able to! Go through the motions slowly and repeat the steps several times so your senior can get the hang of it.

If you have a senior who is a bit forgetful, try writing things down for them. List the steps into simple instructions that your senior can read and perform themselves when you are not around to help them open the Facebook app or browse the internet.

We know it can be a bit frustrating to teach a user of technology who is not as advanced as you are, but it is best to just be patient with your senior. Having patience will help them learn to use technology at their own pace, and it is a nice gesture that tells them how much you love and care for them.

Your senior won’t always remember what you teach them on the first go around, so try and stay consistent. It may take more than one explanation or demonstration for them to get a good grasp on just what it is they are doing, so just keep with it!

Would you like further advice on connecting socially with your senior, or you would like to develop a customized senior care plan for them? If so, call Home Care Assistance! We are ready to talk with you and schedule your consultation.