Senior Care Tips: Communication is the key to working with your parents and other family members.
If you’re all helping your parents with daily care, you must be able to communicate to avoid hurt feelings or frustration. Your family spends a lot of time bickering. It’s clear you’re not communicating. So how do you communicate effectively as a family caregiver? Follow these senior care tips.
One of the best ways to be an effective communicator is by listening and not arguing. You may not love your mom or dad’s attitude, but you have to respect that they have feelings, too. Don’t argue. If you disagree, say you don’t agree but respect their opinion. From there, work on a solution that fits everyone.
For example, your mom hasn’t showered all week. She’s refusing to do so again. You want her to and feel the tension building. She refuses, saying it’s her body. Agree with her that it is her body, but tell her the truth that she smells of body odor. You’re worried about her health when she’s not washing up with soap and water.
That may or may not be enough. If it isn’t, you may have to move to another tactic like offering her favorite food if your mom manages to do things on her list that she’s been putting off, like showering.
At the start of the day, be clear with your parents and other family caregivers. Hold a family meeting and talk about what needs to be completed. If you hire home care aides to help out, make sure they know what’s a priority and what isn’t.
Make sure you explain the way you do things. If others have a technique they believe will be faster, let them try. As long as the job is done, it doesn’t matter how it’s done.
Don’t let anger get the best of you. If you belittle someone because you don’t like what they’ve done or how they’re acting, it will lead to hurt feelings. Once hurt sets in, it’s hard to get back to the way things were. Belittling does nothing but damage relationships.
Senior Care Tips: Always Be Respectful
Be respectful of your parent’s feelings. Your mom has dementia and isn’t happy. She doesn’t want to be a burden. Your dad dislikes you stepping in and telling him how to do things in his home. Remember that. It is their home. You have to be respectful. Give respect and get respect in return.
When everyone communicates well, it eliminates misunderstandings. Your parents have an idea of who will be helping out each day, which eases their anxiety. You know when you’re needed and when you’re available to join friends or run errands.
Make sure you incorporate home care services into your parents’ care plans. With home care aides available on days others are not available, there’s no rush trying to come up with an alternative plan. Instead, call a home care agency to learn more about senior care tips and prices in your area.