Tips for Planning a Hospital Stay for an Aging Parent

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At some point in a senior’s life, he or she may need to be hospitalized for an injury or illness. The prospect of being in a strange place without familiar family members and friends can be frightening. Here are a few ways you can address your aging loved one’s fears about staying in a hospital.

Appoint Someone to Take Care of Your Loved One’s Home

Choose another family member or a friend to take care of your loved one’s home during his or her stay at the hospital. Plants may need watering, pets may need care, and mail may need to be retrieved. A helpmate might also take care of monthly expenses and assist you and your loved one in any way needed.

Aging in the comfort of home can be difficult for seniors with serious health issues. One of the most challenging tasks of helping an elderly relative age in place safely and comfortably is researching agencies that provide senior care. Dallas families can turn to Home Care Assistance for reliable, high-quality in-home care for aging adults. We offer 24-hour live-in care for seniors who require extensive assistance, and we also offer respite care for family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties.

Be Prepared 

Pack an overnight bag with your loved one’s personal hygiene products and nightclothes. Document a list of all known medical conditions your loved one has along with any prescription and over-the-counter medications he or she takes. Provide emergency contact names and numbers, including those of physicians and therapists. Assemble insurance information, powers of attorney, a living will, and other legal papers.

Pack a Few Essential Items

Packing a few treasured items from home provides a sense of comfort to someone in the hospital. Your loved one might have a favorite photograph, book, or audiobook, or he or she might like a word puzzle book to pass the time. A music player with a playlist of favorite songs can provide a calming effect. Your loved one might rest better if he or she wears a sleep mask or earplugs to deter distractions from lights or noise.

Talk to the Physician 

If the impending hospitalization revolves around a planned procedure, talk to the physician who will be providing care and learn all you can about the procedure and the expected outcome. Determine if any medications or food must be withheld prior to admittance. Ask questions about prognosis, discharge, and possible rehabilitation needs.

Be Available 

Plan on spending as much time as possible at the hospital with your loved one. Your presence or the presence of other family members can greatly aid in the recovery process. Consider taking time off from work and asking your spouse to assist with child care and household tasks. You must also eat right and get plenty of rest to ensure you’re in the best health possible to be there for your loved one. 

For some families, caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Dallas home care service provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help.

Learn about the Discharge Needs 

Older adults typically need a long recovery time. Arrange for someone to stay with your loved one in his or her home while he or she recuperates. Enlist the aid of other family members or professional in-home caregivers. If new medications are needed, fill those prescriptions ahead of time. Depending on the reason for the hospitalization, your loved one may need to spend some time in a rehabilitation center. Research available options and make arrangements in advance. 

After your loved one returns home from the hospital, he or she may need 24/7 home care. If your senior loved one needs around-the-clock assistance at home, the Dallas, TX, live-in care professionals at Home Care Assistance are here to help. Our proprietary Balanced Care Method was designed to promote longevity by encouraging seniors to focus on healthy eating, regular exercise, mental engagement, and other important lifestyle factors. To schedule a free in-home consultation, give us a call at (214) 363-3400 today.


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