Aging. It’s difficult to see—especially in those you love.
What are the signs of normal aging . . . of Alzheimer’s and other dementia? Can your parents or loved ones care for themselves without help? What kind of help is best? Where can you go to get it? How can you tell if your loved ones need help (even when they insist they don’t)? And even more importantly, how can you talk to them about it?
Here are some indicators to watch for:
Weight loss and no appetite
Are your loved ones eating? Missing meals can be a sign of depression or dementia. The most common reason, however, is that shopping for and preparing meals might just be too much for them to handle.
Exhibiting signs of poor hygiene
Does your loved one look disheveled? Is he or she wearing dirty clothes, skipping baths? Sometimes the fear of falling in the tub or shower can cause them to neglect their personal hygiene.
A decline in home appearance
What about their home? Are there piles of clutter? Dirty dishes, lots of laundry, unemptied trash, or spoiled food everywhere? If your former “neatnik” loved one is now living in clutter this is cause for concern.
Is your loved one often confused? Overdrawing bank accounts, missing bill payments? Do you often need to “redirect” them? This kind of cognitive decline can be some of the following:
- Problems with medication management
- Mood swings
- Missing special dates and forgetting names of the immediate family
- Missing scheduled appointments
Avoiding activities they once enjoyed, such as meeting with friends or going to religious services.
If you find yourself needing help with an aging loved one, Riley Crossing and our partners in Ebenezer/Fairview can help.
- Care management and coordination
- Home care
- Assisted living, memory care and/or enhanced care
- Adult day programs
- Stay by the day
- Journey programs for couples
Want to get the conversation started? Get a FREE copy of Caregiving for an Elderly Loved One guidebook with checklist and point systems to determine what type of care your loved one may need.