Life changes right before our eyes. How many times have we thought things were going swimmingly only to get a curve ball thrown at us to change everything. Change happens, but doesn't always need to lead to a crisis.
In the case of aging family members and friends, it is a given that things will and do change!
Fortunately, many of these shifts can be planned for and should, at least, be anticipated. These changes are certainly predictable for seniors, but also for families and other support that seniors rely on. Jobs and income changes; housing changes; family member availability changes; folks get sick or incapacitated, spouses pass away, etc.
As seniors age, their predictable evolution may include any of these: getting weaker; not being as sharp mentally; having illness or physical incapacities; becoming unsafe at home; poor diet; feeling insecure; having less opportunity for important social interaction, depression, etc.
Whether you, yourself, are the senior or you are a caring family member or friend, simply being MENTALLY PREPARED will help to minimize unnecessary crisis and stress. Being in denial often leads to future stress. From past experience with families, we've seen that it is extremely beneficial to simply take in a little education and do some early 'what if' planning. Know where your back door is in case your house catches on fire? Of course you do. It can be that simple.
Go to free seminars. Talk to friends who have recent experience or knowledge. Go to free tours. Talk to other family members. Make a mental note of resources, and write them down. Keep a file. It's all good. Anything you do in this effort will help make life easier when these changes happen. You might even be surprised that modest preparation like this even helps you sleep better right now... long before the changes ever need addressing.
Speaking of resources, it can be especially useful to have a cursory understanding what kind of options exist for seniors (or for any of us) at different stages. Do you have a basic understanding of: medical and non-medical In-home care; Assisted Living; Skilled Nursing; Memory Care solutions, Board and Care homes; typical financial realities; financial programs; Medicare; Medi-Cal; Veteran’s Assistance? Are you familiar with time-sensitive legal strategies and tools like Power of Attorney? Have your senior's care wishes been discussed and documented sufficiently? Hospice and palliative care can be wonderful care programs. Do you understand how and when these solutions might make sense? Even if you don't know the specifics or can't even describe these various options, you should consider building a list of resources to call for help... when you do need to know. YES, THERE IS HELP OUT THERE.
Feel free to contact us for some free resource listings or chat with us regarding your evolving senior matters. It's what we do.
Cathy and Mike Ellis
Senior Living Placement and Consulting
We are a family owned business with over 35 years of experience working in Senior Living communities!
We help families in need with senior care and senior living options. We're a free service.
760-696-3542 or 949-412-1288 cell