5 Strategies for Being a Caregiver for a Difficult Older Loved One

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Tips to Help with Difficult Aging Parents in Des Moines, IA

Caring for an aging parent is rewarding, but sometimes it may seem like he or she is purposefully causing you stress. Before you lose your temper, remember these five tips to maintain the health and happiness of both you and your senior loved one.

1. Remain Patient

In most cases, your parent doesn’t mean to irritate you or stress you out. He or she may have developed a disease that affects his or her reasoning, or your loved one could be stressed about matters you aren’t aware of. You may feel an impulse to argue, but the best thing you can do is stay focused on the task of caring for your loved one. If you’re the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality senior care, Des Moines Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age.

2. Let Your Loved One Talk

You may not want to listen to the story of the time your mom or dad went to the lake for the hundredth time, but he or she may appreciate the company. Remember your parent isn’t talking for a self-serving purpose but because he or she actually wants to talk to you. Your parent cares about you, and he or she naturally wants to keep you in the loop. Give your loved one time to talk and share stories, and you’ll be surprised by how much he or she perks up.

3. Don’t Expect Appreciation

If your parent has an illness such as dementia that affects his or her behavior, you may be waiting a long time before you receive any thanks. Even in the absence of illness, your mom or dad may be experiencing other issues that cause him or her to lash out. Remember you’re doing the best you can to care for your parent, and as long as you are confident in your abilities, you won’t need gratitude from others.

4. Give Your Loved One Room to Be Independent

Your parent may fear losing his or her independence and feel helpless and ashamed that the child he or she was once responsible for is now the caregiver. Allow your parent to make as many independent decisions as possible, and let your loved one know his or her opinion is valued. The more control your loved one has over his or her life, the less friction you’ll experience. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional senior home care. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place.

5. Take a Break & Focus on You

One of the best ways to gain perspective on how to handle challenging moments with your parent is to take a break, even if that simply means watching TV or reading a book for an hour. You work hard and take good care of your loved one, so you deserve some relaxation time to yourself. Take a break whenever possible to refresh your mind before getting back to caring for your loved one. Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Des Moines, IA, Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (515) 264-2438 to learn more about our customized care plans.


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