All too often seniors experience a medical event or have a fall in their homes and need to be taken to the emergency room. Often these accidents and events happen at night when seniors may be in their pajamas. When that happens, seniors can be stuck in the emergency department or even admitted to a hospital without having items that they need or items that would make them more comfortable or allow them to maintain their dignity. Every senior should have an emergency bag at home placed conveniently near the door so that they can ask first responders or an in-home care provider to put the bag on the gurney with them as they leave the house. Some of the items that should be in a senior’s emergency bag are:

Slipper Socks

Seniors don’t get the chance to put shoes on when they’re being rushed to emergency. But at the hospital their feet can be exposed and cold. Even though the emergency department may supply hospital grade socks they won’t be very comfortable and probably won’t be very warm. Seniors should have a thick and cozy pair of slipper socks with grips on the bottom that they can wear in the hospital. The grips will seniors avoid falling if they have to get up to get to the bathroom while they are waiting to be seen in the emergency department.

A Robe

Hospital gowns aren’t very modest and they can also leave seniors feeling very cold. A thick robe will help seniors feel more comfortable, give them some coverage if they want it, and help them stay warm. Make sure the robe is oversized and has big sleeves so that it’s easy to take on and off. If your senior loved one doesn’t care for robes an oversized thick cardigan sweater or a large flannel overshirt can also work well.

Briefs

Your senior loved one may not always be able to get to the bathroom if they need to while they are waiting for care. And using a bedpan may not be an option either, especially for seniors who are in the emergency department because of a fall. Every senior’s emergency bag should contain some disposable briefs in their size so that they can put on a brief. Include several so that they can change the brief whenever necessary.

A Fleece Blanket

Even though emergency departments and hospitals are usually kept on the warmer side your senior loved one may be very cold while they are there. Thin hospital blankets don’t do much to provide either warmth or comfort. A thick fleece blanket will help your senior loved one stay warm and cozy while they are getting the care they need. Fleece blankets are easy to wash and relatively inexpensive too so if it becomes soiled or your senior loved one leaves it behind when they leave the hospital it will be easy to replace. You can get twin sized fleece blankets almost anywhere for very little money.

If you or an aging loved one is considering in-home care in Eagan, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Have you talked to your mom about her plans as she ages? Does she want to stay in her current home? If so, it’s not unusual. One study found that 88% of older adults stated they want to age at home. You want to respect your mom’s wishes, but how do you make sure she can? It’s important that you have this discussion before an emergency occurs. If you wait, you could end up with your mom being forced into a situation that makes her unhappy. Here are are few things to consider and how elder care can play a vital role in your senior aging in place safely.

Ask Her About Her Goals for Aging

What are your mom’s goals while she ages? Has she talked about downsizing or moving to a different neighborhood to be closer to her friends, local businesses, or medical offices? That should be a priority.

Does your mom want to be nearer to her kids and grandkids? If it came to it, would she be willing to move in with you? She may hate that idea, but it’s worth addressing.

What’s Her Family Health History?

Is there a history of chronic health conditions in your mom’s family? Heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer, are just some of the chronic conditions that run in families. If there is a family history, it’s important that your mom goes for routine screenings.

If she has a chronic health condition, she needs to be honest with others and herself about how much it impacts her daily routine. If she has diabetes, does she struggle to remember to check her sugar levels, carefully read labels in the grocery store, and cook appropriate meals? Would it help her to have elder care helping out?

What Medications Does Her Doctor Want Her to Take?

With many chronic health conditions, your mom may have to take medications. The side effects can impact her daily activities by causing dizziness, drowsiness, or nausea. Would she be more comfortable having someone in her home while she showers, gets dressed, and goes on walks?

Is She Supposed to Drive?

Has your mom’s eye doctor told her her vision is worsening? Is she on prescription medications that cause drowsiness? Is she supposed to drive?

If not, she doesn’t have to stop going out or running errands, she just needs a driver. Elder care aides can drive her around. What she doesn’t want to do is drive anyway and risk a crash that injures herself and others.

How do you schedule elder care visits? Jot down a list of questions that you and your mom have. Use that list to ensure you know everything you need to know. Talk to an elder care advisor, go over your questions, get prices, and complete the call by scheduling caregiver visits.

Sources:
https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2022-04-13/americans-over-50-want-to-age-in-place-at-home-but-many-arent-prepared-poll

If you or an aging loved one is considering elder care in St. Paul, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.