- Uncharacteristic neglect of home maintenance/housekeeping: If your loved ones are known for the pride they take in their home and garden, a lapse in this care can be a sign they are no longer coping. Ignoring excess clutter, the garden overgrowth, and home maintenance issues can also increase the risk of falls and injuries in the home. If you suspect they feel overwhelmed, offer to help out with certain tasks, but if your parents can’t seem to regain control over their home it may be time to suggest assisted living.
- Bills aren’t being paid – or are being overpaid: An occasional lapse or moment of confusion is understandable when it comes to a person’s finances, but if you notice bills starting to pile up or your loved ones making other financial errors, it is right to feel concerned. Managing your own money is a hallmark of independence, so this may be a difficult conversation to have, especially with parents, but it is important to help your parents trust that they can have help handling their finances.
- Weight loss: This can be linked to a number of issues, such as grief, depression, and fear of driving or leaving the house. Stay on the lookout for spoiled food, empty fridges or an unwillingness to leave the house to run errands such as grocery shopping. Identifying the issue can help your parents manage their health and stress.
- Uncharacteristic, inappropriate behavior: This covers a wide range of issues from odd conversations, forgetting to dress properly and decreased personal hygiene, to paranoia, accidentally taking too much medication and notably increased forgetfulness (like burning food on the stove, etc.).
- A serious medical diagnosis: Medical conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s will affect your loved ones’ ability to cope with day-to-day activities and permanent caregiving is key to slowing the condition’s progression and ensuring their quality of life. While you may be able to assist in the early stages, it’s important to remember that qualified professionals such as those at United Methodist Communities memory care residences are available to provide additional compassion and support.
Adult children are often the best at picking up on these issues and determining whether these behaviors are just personal quirks or something more serious, so remember to rely on your instincts. If you are worried about your parents or aging loved ones, a gentle conversation will help determine if they need help and what support is available.
Compassionate care and community assisted living
At United Methodist Communities of New Jersey, our priority is to deliver affordable, expert assisted living, nursing home care and support services to seniors based on their individual needs. With residential apartments designed for optimal access and mobility, meal programs and 24-hour medical and security services, we help our residents to live independent, full lives. We also have a great selection of social programs, classes, events and trips, as well as customized support services for Alzheimer’s and dementia residents.
For more information on our assisted living communities and long-term care services, contact us today.