How to Help an Elderly Loved One Who Can’t Walk

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Seniors who reach a point where they cannot walk need more help than ever before. Your elderly loved one may encounter challenges with many of the activities of daily living. You can work through each of these steps to make sure your loved one has the help he or she needs to thrive without compromising the ability to stay as independent as possible. 

Find the Right Mobility Device

There are many different types of mobility aids available today to help seniors get around safely. Most seniors who are unable to walk at all will need some type of wheelchair. There are manual wheelchairs for seniors who still have the use of their arms along with motorized versions that work best for people who have limited mobility in all of their limbs. Finding the right mobility device for your loved one allows him or her to figure out how to manage many of his or her daily needs.  Caring for a senior loved one with limited mobility can be even more challenging if he or she is living with another age-related condition, such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. For dementia care Des Moines families can count on, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Our compassionate caregivers use revolutionary memory care programs to help seniors stave off the progression of dementia, and they can also assist with a wide variety of important everyday tasks, including bathing, grooming, exercise, and cooking.

Create an Accessible Home

An accessible home is one that’s set up so people with disabilities can still maneuver comfortably through their living spaces. For instance, you may need to create wider paths along the main routes in your loved one’s home that make it possible to get through the areas with a mobility aid. You might also want to place commonly used items within your loved one’s reach, such as placing dishes on a lower shelf in a bottom cabinet. If your loved one is completely bedbound, this could involve putting his or her glasses and other necessities on a table that sits over the bed. 

Assess Your Loved One’s Daily Needs

Every senior is different, and your loved one’s daily routine may include many things he or she can no longer do alone. Ask your loved one about the activities he or she does each day. This helps you set up a plan to make sure your parent takes medication on time, eats healthy meals, and stays on top of personal hygiene. Your loved one may also need help with things such as feeding pets or caring for the lawn. 

Encourage Physical Activity

Exercise is important for seniors even if they can no longer walk. Fortunately, there are a lot of great ways to encourage physical movement. Seniors who aren’t able to walk at all can do arm exercises and leg stretches from a seated position. Your loved one might also be able to dance with his or her upper body while sitting in a wheelchair. Moving as much as possible can counteract the effects of burning fewer calories each day.  A professional caregiver can help your loved one safely follow an exercise program recommended by your parent’s doctor. Many seniors prefer aging in place over moving to assisted living facilities. If your senior loved one needs assistance to remain safe and comfortable while living at home, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading homecare services agency. Our dedicated in-home caregivers can assist with meal prep, bathing and grooming, exercise, medication reminders, and many other important tasks.

Learn Safe Transfer Techniques

Your thoughts might be on your loved one, but you also need to think about how you’ll take care of yourself. Trying to move your loved one from one place to another puts you at risk for injuries. Learn how to maintain the correct posture when you do a transfer, and consider arranging for help each day. Taking care of your back means you’ll be able to help your loved one for longer.  Trained caregivers with experience in caring for seniors with mobility limitations can be a fantastic resource for families. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated senior care, Des Moines, IA, families can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise. If you need professional home care for your loved one, reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (515) 264-2438.


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