As our loved ones get older it can be hard to see them begin to need some extra help and even harder finding ways to help them without looking bossy or patronising. In this list we take a look at how you can help an ageing parent or relative while also helping them maintain their independence as long as possible.
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1 Get kitted up: Alexa, remind me of my doctor’s appointment. Just because they’re older doesn’t mean they’re not going to benefit from some smart tech, from doorbells to smart speakers get teched up
2 Buy some space: want to move them closer, consider an extension or looking into Transportable Homes
3 Stay regular: create a regular slot to visit your loved one and stick to it
4 Install an alarm button: in case of an emergency, have a button to press that provides 24-hour a day support
5 Keep up: engage your family member with what’s going on in the world and keep them up to date with current affairs
6 New hobby: it’s never too late to try anything new so if belly dancing grabs their interest, help make that happen
7 Home help: have a carer visit regularly to help with cooking, shopping and personal care
8 Hire a cleaner: Similarly have a cleaner visit once a week to do the heavier jobs and stay on top of housework
9 Don’t wrap them in cotton wool: they be older but they’re still adults, their decisions and opinions matter
10 Create a safe space: make sure there are no trip hazards such as trailing wires anywhere
11 Get organised: make it easier to manage bills and benefits with a good filing system and update it regularly
12 Teach tech: get your relative an iPad and let them loose on the games, Skype and other fun things that require learning a new skill
13 Exercise: gentle, regular exercise will help the body and mind feel better and healthier
14 Stay in touch: help them stay connected to old friends with regular calls and visits
15 Stay involved: let your loved one feel involved in your day-to-day life, especially if it means being around children
16 Ask for advice: tap into that life experience and seek advice from people who have seen and done it all before you
17 Encourage volunteering: from the local charity shop to Scouts, help them find something they love and a community to engage with
Getting older can be daunting but it doesn’t have to mean your loved one should feel cut off or have to give up their much guarded independence. Help them to stay in their own homes as long as possible and involved with community and friends for a long and happy life.
Keep providing challenges for the mind as well as the body to stave off boredom. Our 17 tips will give you inspiration on helping those closest to you stay active mentally and physically and feel part of the family.