From having more time to explore hobbies and interests to enjoying a broader range of freedom, there are many good things about getting older. At the same time, there are a number of valid fears that go along with the golden years of life. Below, you’ll find eight common fears seniors have along with tips for helping an older loved one address them.
1. Loss of Independence
A common fear for older adults is losing their precious independence due to health issues, age-related limitations, or a general need for regular care or assistance. Help your loved one maintain independence as much as possible with appropriate home modifications and careful monitoring of health-related concerns. In-home care is also worth considering if regular care is a growing need.
Living independently is important for seniors who want to maintain a high quality of life. For some, this simply means receiving help with tasks that have become more challenging to manage over time. Even when families have the best intentions, they may not have the time to provide the care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. If your loved one needs help for a few hours a day or a few days a week, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of respite care Toronto seniors can depend on.
2. Safety/Security Fears
As adults get older, they may have concerns about all aspects of home safety and security. If these fears involve concerns about break-ins, a home security system can be a smart investment. Safety/security fears can also include a fear of falling and getting hurt. Routinely checking for and removing fall risks from your loved one’s home is one way to address this concern.
3. Loss of Memory
The Government of Canada’s website notes more than 400,000 seniors in Canada are living with dementia. If memory loss is a concern for your loved one, encourage regular health screenings and remind him or her that mild memory loss associated with aging is often manageable and not always related to dementia.
4. Decreasing Health
It’s common for older adults to have fears about a lower quality of life and high medical bills related to health issues. Urging your loved one to heed the doctor’s advice and encouraging healthy eating and exercise habits are some of the ways to mitigate this fear for your loved one.
Professional caregivers with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement for seniors. Many seniors prefer aging in place over moving to an assisted living facility. If your senior loved one needs assistance to remain safe and comfortable while living at home, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading home care agency. Our dedicated in-home caregivers can assist with meal prep, bathing and grooming, exercise, medication reminders, and many other important tasks.
5. Financial Fears
While there’s more to the golden years than money, it’s a common concern for seniors who live on fixed incomes. Even if retirement savings are part of the equation, stretching that financial resource can also be a concern. A financial planner specializing in senior-related money matters may be able to ease financial fears.
6. Lack of Familiar Routines
Many seniors make the transition from working to retirement and come out just fine. However, other shakeups to routines that may happen because of the loss of a spouse, grown children moving away, or having fewer opportunities to socialize can contribute to a fear of other unexpected changes of this nature. This fear may be minimized by steering your loved one toward ways to meet and interact with people his or her age and developing a new routine that’s comfortable for him or her.
7. Loss of Dignity
Seniors don’t always have the good fortune to age gracefully, which may result in the need for assistance with bathing, grooming, toileting, and other personal care tasks. Conditions like stroke, dementia, and arthritis can also result in the need for more hands-on care and supervision that may not always allow older adults to fully maintain their dignity. One way to address such concerns is to be as respectful as possible if care of a more personal nature is needed.
8. No Longer Being Able to Drive
Seniors who’ve always enjoyed the freedom of owning and operating vehicles can have a difficult time handling the inability to safely drive. Not being able to drive anymore doesn’t have to be such a terrible thing if you arrange for other sources of transportation or encourage your loved one to take advantage of local amenities within walking distance.
Transportation is just one of the many types of assistance a home caregiver can provide for your loved one. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of at-home care. Toronto families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Schedule a free in-home consultation by giving us a call today at (416) 488-8777.