Tough economic times have more and more families responsible for the care of aging parents. The term Sandwich Generation highlights a growing demographic of middle agers caring simultaneously for children and for ailing parents.
Recent census statistics show that more than 25% of American families are connected in various manners for the care of an aging parent. Health degradation can be a gradual process but most issues arrive suddenly, leaving many unprepared. Poor health and a difficult economy only compounds stress, especially for the primary caregiver.
What is a sandwich caregiver to do? The first step is to be aware of senior issues and what older adults fear most. The number one fear is losing a driver’s license. This is a symptom of a greater subset – fear of losing one’s independence. The second worry facing seniors is outliving their retirement savings.
Planning and preparation for retirement is key, although it is not possible to turn back the clock or catch up in just a few years time. Health problems, and in many cases, financial problems—are virtually inevitable sometime in life. A lack of planning can lead to high stress levels when issues arise.
Discussion of the situation begins with an empathetic conversation with your parent. Take caution here, because too often the discussion turns into something more akin to a talk with a child than a parent. This is a surefire way to get off on the wrong foot; disrupting any hopes of cooperation and collaboration. Make the discussion a team effort remembering the viewpoint of your parent – they are in charge of their life; they don’t want to lose their independence and often more importantly, they do not want to be a burden.
The team at Serenity Home Health in Wichita, Kansas understands these issues: we are here to help. Our professional caregivers come from a wide range of health care backgrounds and education, and our social workers are experienced advisors. Statistics show that when professional health care is employed in the home, health improves, nutritional awareness improves and the relationship between family members improves. The aging parent no longer feels like a burden to family members and they are able to remain at home, independent for a much longer period of time.
Serenity Home Health provides Medicare Certified home health care in Wichita and its surrounding areas. If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call (316) 866-2929 or visit our office at 9415 E. Harry, Suite-301. Our office is located just West of Walgreens on the Southwest corner of Harry and Webb Road.
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