Long-Distance Senior Care Tips

Arranging care for our aging loved ones can be tricky even when they live down the street, let alone when they’re located across the country.

With this in mind, today’s post outlines a few simple long-distance senior care strategies. These tips will come in useful if you’re dealing with a remote care situation, and will also shed some light on how buying a home care franchise makes life easier for community members in need.

Establish a contact routine

Research by the Annals of Behavioral Medicine linked feelings of loneliness, social isolation, and lack of companionship to greater risk of heart conditions among senior population samples (Sorkin et al., 2002, p. 290). Clearly, regular, planned social contact is essential for long-distant care situations, mitigating the health risks associated with loneliness and depression.

Fortunately, modern technology makes regular contact easier than ever. Establishing a routine creates a sense of stability, and gives your loved one something to look forward to when loneliness sets in. These routines can be as simple as weekly phone calls or email exchanges to share news or reminisce. If your loved one is tech-savvy, a Skype or FaceTime call will almost feel like you’re there in person.

If you struggle to maintain regular contact, consider adding Companionship services to your care package. Our highly-trained caregivers provide companionship, friendship, and emotional support for your loved ones, and also assist with transportation and everyday activities of living.

Work closely with caregivers

Establishing a relationship with those responsible for the care of your loved one increases caregiver accountability, makes you part of your parent’s care team, and opens another line of support for any questions or concerns you may have.

Ideally, you will have the opportunity to meet your loved one’s caregivers in person. If that’s not the case, establish clear lines of communication via phone or email and maintain regular contact.

At Executive Care, our commitment to client care extends from the recipient to their family members, which means keeping strong lines of communication: we ensure that office staff are available 24 hour a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Moreover, all franchise owners are trained to involve the family during care assessments and when writing their custom Plan of Care.

Meet the doctor

Building off our previous point, we must also stress the importance of getting to know your parent’s doctor. This is especially true if your loved one is suffering from dementia or chronic illness, as your doctor can provide important information about medication and care concerns that you parent may not be capable of expressing or identifying on their own.

While it may not be feasible to travel for a meeting in person, technology can bridge the distance between you. You can also encourage your caregiver to work as another point of contact with the doctor. For added reassurance, easy transportation, and a set second of eyes and ears, we recommend sending a trusted caregiver to accompany your parent to medical appointments.

Find more long-distance care tips or explore how buying a home care franchise can help remote seniors in need at http://www.executivehomecarefranchise.com.

References

Sorkin, D., Rook, K. S., & Lu, J. L. (2002). Loneliness, lack of emotional support, lack of companionship, and the likelihood of having a heart condition in an elderly sample. Annals of Behavioral Medicine24(4), 290-298.