Caregiver Tips for “Parenting” Elderly Parents

January 16, 2019
Janelle Thomas MSN, RN
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Your teen years were filled with struggles against your parents. You wanted more freedom. Shorter curfews, more room to make decisions, and less control on their part. Now the roles are reversed. Your parents need help with daily activities of living, but they don’t want your help. They feel they’re fully capable of caring for themselves.

4 Caregiver Tips for “Parenting” Elderly Parents

Here are tips to help you know which battles to pick and when to back off.

1. Discuss the Reasons Why Something is Important

You want your mom to take her medications. She refuses. Sit down with her and look at the potential implications that can happen if she doesn’t take her medication. If she’s taking antibiotics for an infection, show her what can happen if the infection worsens.

Some of your battles may not be something you should fight your parent on. If your dad refuses to drink water and wants coffee instead, don’t push as hard on this one. He’s getting hydrated, even if it isn’t your choice of beverage. If caffeine is a concern, switch his caffeinated beans to decaf without him knowing.

2. Sometimes You’ll Be Wrong

Be ready to admit when you’re wrong. You might think that your mom sleeping all morning and not getting up till noon is a problem. You push her to get up earlier, and she’s resisting. You talk to her doctor who says it’s not a concern as long as she is getting enough sleep. You’ve tracked her sleeping patterns and she’s getting seven to eight hours of sleep. In this case, you’re wrong and need to let her do what her body feels is best.

3. Sometimes You Have to Put Your Foot Down

When something your dad or mom refuses to do will risk their health or safety, you’ll have to be ready to refuse to cave. If your dad’s doctor said he cannot safely drive, stick to his doctor’s instructions. If your dad fights you on it, take the keys, remove the battery, and leave the room or go outside until he’s calmed down. Once he’s calmer, you can explain why it’s important that he no longer drives.

4. Have Outside Help Available

One of the best ways for your parent to live independently is by hiring outside help. Your mom or dad won’t have the same expectations for someone from the outside, which makes it a little easier when getting help with daily tasks.

Caregivers are trained to assist without infringing upon your mom or dad’s privacy. Caregivers help with meals, transportation, housekeeping, and companionship.

Contact Care Options for Kids for Home Health Care Services

Learn more about the possible services by calling our home care agency

If you or an aging loved one are considering home health care services, contact the caring staff at Care Options for Kids. Call today at (888) 592-5855.