Are you concerned for the health and wellbeing of your parents or a loved one? Maybe they are not eating regularly, or you are discovering that their food in the fridge is going out of date. Maybe they are not drinking enough fluids or maybe they are simply feeling lonely at home… We find that introducing a small amount of care early on can actually help promote positive health outcomes in later life.
Here are three top tips from Lisa Cable, co-Director at Radfield Home Care…
Hydration is extremely important as you grow older. Drinking plenty of fluids can help boost your mood and maintain good physical and mental health. In addition, keeping hydrated can ensure that your health is in good shape. Typically older people are more susceptible to health conditions and water can help to fight off any illness.
Sometimes we find that clients are reluctant to keep hydrated or they simple forget to drink regularly. This is of even more importance during the summer months when it is hotter. Here are some tips on how you can help your parents stay hydrated at home.
Purchase water bottle – sometimes one with a straw can be helpful and make it easier to drink regularly. Have carers visiting regularly to share a cup of tea and remind our loved ones to have a drink. They can even refill the water bottle and monitor fluid intake. Take a look at the toilet access for your loved one and consider how mobile they are. Sometimes our clients can be reluctant to drink as they are concerned about getting to the toilet safely, so want to minimise the amount of visits to the toilet. Simple things could be put in place like a commode or grab rails to make the trip easier.
We also find that as people get older they may lose their appetite or desire to eat regularly. This can be a concern, because it is so important to eat healthy and nutritious meals to promote positive health outcomes. Here are some tips on how to encourage your parents to eat well.
Consider having carers visiting in a structured way around your loved ones meals, e.g. at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Carers can cook fresh meals and monitor what food is being eaten. There is also the option of sourcing healthy ready meal options for convenience and complementing this with fresh vegetables. It is a great idea to have healthy snacks available and easily accessible for your loved ones. For example this could include fruit, nuts, yogurts, etc.
Mobility can be something that declines as your parents grow older. However it is important to try to keep your parents active and keep their muscles strengthened so they can continue to live independently at home for as long as possible. Here are some tips to help with promoting good mobility.
Understand what your loved one is comfortable doing and encourage them to be as mobile as possible, even if this is just getting up to make a cup of tea during the day. If they can get out of the house then you could use a care company that can encourage your loved one to become involved in local clubs or doing the hobbies they once enjoyed. You could also build in companionship to each care visit to promote wellbeing, e.g. sharing a chat over a cup of tea.
Overall the best outcome can be achieved when the family are involved in a clients wellbeing and working together and monitoring is fundamental.
One of our clients had a bad fall and when she came out of hospital she needed 24/7 support, however over time our client improved so much that she just has two 2 hour visits per day. This is because she had been encouraged to walk around her home, make her own cups of tea, prepare lunch and take her own medication. Overall we saved a lot of money for our client and her health was significantly improved at the same time!
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Watch the full Youtube video Series: How To Have A Conversation With Your Parents: How To Stay Fit & Healthy for Older People?
Get in touch with your local Radfield Home Care office today and find out more about the support we offer and the difference we can make.