Tips for Talking with Seniors about Planning for the Future

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Many family caregivers and seniors would like to skip conversations about the future, but when it comes to medical choices, finances, and daily care, these discussions are necessary. Before having these talks, you should know where to begin and develop strategies to prevent your aging loved one from being overwhelmed. Below are tips you can use when speaking to your parent about future plans.

Start Early

Planning ahead of time can help your loved one avoid injuries and address medical conditions that impact his or her independence and quality of life. During these conversations, include your siblings and other caregivers. The meetings can occur via telephone or video chat, or you can meet at your loved one’s home. Bring all the information you need, and be prepared to listen to everyone’s wishes and opinions, particularly those of your loved one.

Learn More about Your Loved One’s Health

Most medical conditions progress over time, which means your parent may feel great now, but the symptoms of a disease or illness could worsen later in life. Learning about your loved one’s current health conditions allows you to develop the best options for the future. When you present these suggestions to your parent, he or she may be more agreeable, since you came prepared.

One great way to introduce your parent to the idea of getting help at home is to hire a caregiver for a few hours a day or a few days a week. For families living in Green Valley, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home.

Be Respectful but Assertive

Some seniors resist these types of conversations and try to change the subject entirely. Although you should never force decisions on your loved one, you need to have the talks. To ease the situation, offer your parent the support and understanding he or she deserves. When you notice a subject becoming overwhelming, try to move on to another topic or postpone the conversation for a later time. However, you should always come back to the issue to develop a plan that suits your loved one’s preferences.

Remind your loved one he or she is not alone. Many older adults are choosing to age in place, and some need a helping hand to continue living at home safely and comfortably. Luckily, there is professional elder care seniors can trust and rely on.

Put the Plans in Writing

Your loved one may not remember what was agreed to, but having those plans in writing could help him or her reflect on his or her wishes and values. Having the choices legally documented could be beneficial later on when your loved one is unable to speak or make logical decisions. You can present the documents to your loved one’s physician, ensuring your parent gets the type of care he or she needs and wants. While going over future plans, explain the benefits of having those decisions documented and notarized.

Ask for Assistance

Hearing you state facts and various medical statistics may not convince your loved one that a conversation about plans is necessary, which is why you should ask doctors, nurses, counselors, and social workers for assistance. These professionals can offer unbiased suggestions your loved one may accept with greater ease. Asking for help doesn’t devalue your knowledge or diminish your influence. It merely provides another effective way to tackle long-term plans, including future living arrangements and treatments. 

Your parent may be reassured about receiving help if he or she speaks personally with staff from a trustworthy home care provider. The type of home care service Green Valley, AZ, seniors need can vary. Some need assistance a few hours a day, while others require more extensive around-the-clock assistance. At Home Care Assistance, we tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual care needs, and the plans can be adjusted at any time. To create a customized in-home care plan for your loved one, call us at 520-625-2050.