Saturday, February 19, 2011

Caring For Elderly Parents: Top 10 Concerns | cdaamerica


Parents care for their children, to strengthen body and mind, and
nurture them forward to independence. Siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins and even friends and neighbors often join in the family circle, helping to care for the kids. Such is what caregiving is all about, a nurturing,
supportive commitment by family and extended family members. Many of us have the opportunity to return that same level of commitment and support to Mom, Dad or both as they age.

It is time to return the favor, not just individually, but as a family, to
provide support where necessary and preserve your parents’ ability and
independence as long as possible. What are the 10 most important family concerns in caregiving for a parent? Consider:

1. Rally the Troops

Deborah Halpern, Communications Director for the non-profit National Family Caregiver’s Association, urges that caregiving your parent is not a one-person job or burden. Instead, you should have a family team that includes friends and neighbors, each with a role and responsibility in the caregiving process. There must be a ringleader, according to Halpern, who contacts each family member with the invitation or challenge to”step up to the plate and help.”

Consider the team concept as akin to hiring for different jobs in a company.
Everyone is good at something, while he or she may be inept or less than
qualified in another task or field. When several family members are involved,
even for just a few hours each week, the burden on the primary caregiver is
reduced significantly. Sharing responsibilities also brings more family members
into active contact, sharing, support, monitoring, understanding and visiting
with Mom or Dad.

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