Stroke recovery doesn’t always follow a linear path, and it’s important to make sure seniors have help at home after leaving the hospital. Stepping up to be a family caregiver is honorable, and your efforts give your aging loved one the best chances of regaining his or her abilities. Being prepared for these challenges helps you stay a step ahead as you begin performing your duties.
1. Finding Ways to Communicate
Communication is one of the most obvious areas where a stroke leaves a dramatic impact. Your loved one may be unable to come up with the right words to complete a sentence. He or she may also have physical challenges with speech, and it’s common for stroke survivors to also have difficulty understanding what other people say. In addition to taking your loved one to therapy, you can use picture cards and other nonverbal means of communication to help everyone get their points across.
2. Helping with Hygiene
You might be ready to help your loved one take medication and prepare meals, but many caregivers find it difficult to handle their parents’ personal hygiene tasks while protecting their loved one’s dignity. This is one area where you may want to plan for someone else to step in. A professional caregiver can help your parent with clothing changes and bathing until your loved one can handle these tasks independently.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
3. Assisting with Eating
Some senior stroke survivors have difficulty chewing and swallowing their food. Make sure to ask your loved one’s medical team about how well your loved one can eat before you bring him or her home. If your loved one has difficulty eating, you may need to plan to make healthy meals that are easier to swallow, such as smoothies.
Professional caregivers can be a fantastic source of information and support for families of seniors recovering from strokes. The type of senior care Chandler, AZ, seniors need can vary. Some need assistance a few hours a day, while others require more extensive around-the-clock assistance. At Home Care Assistance, we tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual care needs, and the plans can be adjusted at any time.
4. Going to Aftercare Appointments
A senior may not be able to drive for some time after a stroke, which means you’ll be responsible for helping your loved one get to and from critical aftercare appointments. Some seniors need to attend therapy appointments several days a week, which can become challenging. Create a plan for who will take your loved one to each appointment. Remember there may be times when you need to be somewhere else, and having backup transportation available helps your loved one make it to each appointment on time.
5. Providing Mobility Support
As your loved one progresses from being bedridden to trying to get around independently, he or she will still need plenty of support. From offering a supportive hand as your loved one gets out of bed to helping him or her learn to use a mobility device, this is one of the most physically taxing parts of your role. If you worry about being able to physically support your loved one, consider having another caregiver in the home to help. You’ll save your back and prevent potentially damaging falls.
6. Handling Emotional Stress
Watching your loved one lose many of his or her abilities can be devastating. While you can look forward to seeing your loved one make gains over the next several months, it’s still difficult to watch someone you love face such challenges. On top of that, you may be facing other stressors, such as trying to balance your work or home life with your new role. Take time out for self-care, and remember that talking to others about your challenges can help you overcome the worst effects of stress.
Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Chandler, AZ, live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. To create a customized home care plan for your loved one, call Home Care Assistance at (480) 448-6215 today.