We do not all age at the same rate, but unfortunately, it is a universal inevitability, nevertheless. When age catches up, even the fittest seniors need assistance to live well. So, how does one find out if their old parent(s)need assisted living conditions to live better lives? There are several signs that anyone paying attention can note easily and we are going to discuss some of them next.
People do not change lifelong habits after a certain age unless there is a definite cause for them to do so. Pay an unannounced visit to your parent’s home and see if it looks abnormally cluttered and dirty. Piled-up trash, unclean laundry, unwashed dishes, dirty floors, etc. are all signs that the people living in there are finding it exceptionally difficult to go through their daily chores for some reason.
The reason could be arthritis, fatigue, backpain, sickness, or even forgetfulness. You may not have noticed it before because they knew you were coming and, as a result, they cleaned up before your arrival. An unannounced visit may show you exactly how difficult it is for them to live alone now. Even if you cannot care for them at your own home, there are assisted living Houston communities where your parent(s) will find genuine care, companionship, and 24-hour service, catering to all their needs.
Unexpected and Significant Weight Loss
If an elder is not on a diet and exercise regime that they are aware of, they should not be losing a lot of weight within a very short time. In case that does happen, it means one, if not all of the following:
- They are forgetting to eat and drink.
- They are unable to or unwilling to eat.
- They are seriously ill.
Forgetfulness to that extent can be extremely dangerous because it often indicates an underlying problem such as Alzheimer’s, TIA, and cerebral stroke among others. Dysphagia could be responsible for their unwillingness or inability to eat, which is also indicative of underlying medical conditions. There is no way to tell for sure without going to a physician. Seek medical assistance on their behalf at the earliest. Also, take the necessary steps to ensure they are not left alone and unattended at home.
Loneliness and Depression
Loneliness and depression are extremely common among the elderly, especially if they are single. Chances of depression are even higher if an elder has lost his/her partner recently. The fact that seniors are unlikely to be left with many friends who live nearby does not help either. If you have only one surviving, single parent who lives alone, look for the usual signs of depression.
More often than not, they will tell you about it on their own, but not everyone will. Depression can also lead to sudden weight loss, loss of appetite, general disinterest, anxiety, and forgetfulness. Next time you check on your parents, give them the time they need to talk with you and feel better. Also, if you see the more serious signs of depression, do not leave them alone.