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How to Help an Ageing Parent Live Independently

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Living independently can often become more of a struggle than it used to be when we get older. If you have noticed that your parents or an elderly relative are having a harder time than they used to when it comes to getting things done, there might be certain things that you can do to help them live more comfortably and independently. Most seniors prefer to keep their independent lifestyles for as long as possible but, in some cases, they might need a little help and support in order to achieve it.

Home care

While you might hope to be the person who goes to see your parent every day and helps them live independently at home, this might not always be possible when you have a busy life, a job, and a family of your own to look after. Home care solutions can be just what you need when it comes to helping your parent live more independently and stay in their own home for longer. Be prepared with the proper home care equipment and hire trustworthy, reputable caregivers. 

Home adaption

It can be difficult to watch an elderly parent struggling to do things at home that they would normally find easy. If your parent has started to struggle with tasks like getting upstairs to go to bed or going to the bathroom at home, it’s probably time to consider how their home could be adapted to make it easier for them to live in. Adding a stair lift, for example, can make it easier for them to get around in a two-story home, or a downstairs bathroom can make this easier for them to access throughout the day. 

Mobility tools

One of the main parts of being independent is being able to move around freely, and a parent who is struggling with mobility issues might not be able to do this without the help of certain mobility tools. A senior with mobility issues might find it very frustrating if they are struggling to get out and do things when normally they would be getting out quite a lot. Consider an electric wheelchair or mobility scooter that your parent can use to safely get around. 

Social life

A social life can be a huge part of any person’s life, but this can often get more important as we get older and have more time to spend with friends and family. If your parent is struggling to get around like they used to do, there are several things that you can do to help them enjoy a good social life and prevent them from becoming lonely and isolated. Find senior groups in your area that you can encourage them to join, whether it’s regular meetups for coffee and a chat or exercise groups that they can become a part of to stay fit and healthy. 

Most of us want to see our ageing parents thriving and happy. If remaining independent for as long as possible is important to your parent, but they are struggling with some everyday tasks, there are several things that you can do to help and support this goal.

Ellen Diamond did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.

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