Holidays are a time when families come together in person, often seeing relatives we haven’t seen in some time. This year, you may notice warning signs that someone you love isn’t managing as well as you thought. There may be home repairs that have not been addressed, physical health that has been neglected, or a general decline in quality of life. A holiday visit presents the perfect opportunity to see if a little bit of proactive home care help can prevent a larger crisis from happening later on.
20 Warnings Signs of Senior Decline
- Recent accidents or close calls, like a fall, medical scare, or minor car accident
- A slow recovery – a recent illness that took a real toll or developed into something serious
- Medical help not sought when needed
- Worsening of a chronic health condition
- Greater difficulty managing activities of daily living, like dressing, bathing, and cooking
- Bodily changes i.e. obvious weight loss/gain, increased frailty, unpleasant body odor, etc.
- A loss of active friendships including outings with friends, visits with neighbors, or participation in religious or other group activities, etc.
- Days spent without leaving the house, perhaps because of difficulty driving or a fear of using public transportation
- No one checking in regularly; no home-safety alarm system, no personal alarm system, and no daily calling service in place
- No one nearby to assist if there’s a fire, earthquake, flood or other disaster and the individual can’t physically or cognitively navigate a catastrophe
- Mail unorganized, scattered about and unopened, unpaid overdue bills, surprising thank-you notes from charities, or piles of unread magazines
- If still driving, failure to fasten the seat belt or heed dashboard warning lights, signs of tension, preoccupation, or distraction while driving, or unexplained damage to the vehicle
- In the kitchen, signs of excess or forgetfulness, food past their expiration dates, spoiled food, barren cupboards and/or fridge
- Signs of fires: charred stove knobs or pots, potholders with burned edges, a discharged fire extinguisher; also check for working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
- A once well-kept home now cluttered, spills not cleaned up, grime coating bathroom or kitchen appliances, an overflowing laundry basket, favorite appliances are broken but not scheduled for repair, etc.
- Signs of neglect outside the home i.e. broken windows, clogged gutters and drains, uncollected garbage, an overstuffed mailbox, etc.
- Neglected plants or pets
- Increased anxieties or loneliness; friends or neighbors report recent changes in behavior
- Signs of neglect in grooming like unkempt or disheveled appearance, toenails and fingernails that aren’t trimmed, hair or makeup not styled as usual
- The primary caregiver is increasingly exhausted, depressed, or becoming resentful of the sacrifices made; only one spouse is managing all household responsibilities
Forward-thinking people engage in long-range planning for their health care needs and want assurance that help will be there when needed. This can be complicated for people who have no children or whose adult children live out of the area.
LivHOME Connect provides 24 hour Active Remote Care to a licensed nurse when you can’t be there, giving everyone instant connection and peace of mind.
LivHOME Standby Services are designed to give people who have been functioning independently a local connection. It is a professional set of eyes providing routine contact and oversight, even when you don’t need caregiving services at the time.
As always, please don’t hesitate to call LivHOME at (800) 660-CARE with any questions regarding aging concerns for your family, near or far.