Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Turning the Tables: Helping Your Parents Stay Healthy

As your parents get older, it's difficult not to worry about their health. Keeping them happy and healthy becomes one of your top concerns, but you might not want to appear to be too interfering. If you want to help them with their health, make sure you work with them, keeping communication open. You don't want to make decisions for them if they're capable of doing it themselves or at least having some input. Whether they're able to decide things for themselves or they need some help, there are a few things you can assist them with.

Medical Coverage

Everyone needs adequate medical insurance coverage if they want to avoid having to pay huge medical costs out of pocket. People aged 65 or older can use the government's Medicare program, which offers federal health insurance for retirees and seniors. You can also "top up" Medicare coverage using supplement plans, like the ones at www.gomedigap.com/medicare-supplement-plans/. These plans are standardized, so whichever insurance company you use, you will get the same coverage. Health insurance can always be hard to understand, so lending a hand if your parents are struggling is helpful.

Making Care Decisions

It's not unusual to need some help with care as you get older. You might find that your parents can no longer be completely independent and you need to think about getting them some extra help. These are the types of decisions you can make together, looking at the options and discussing them to find the best choice. You need to think about several factors, including their care needs, affordability, and what's available in your area. It can be a delicate decision because accepting that you need care is often difficult. Try not to rush things and make sure you communicate with each other.

Helping with Mental Health

Older people are at risk of developing mental health problems such as depression due to a variety of factors. One of the things that can affect mental health is loneliness, as well as not having an active or sociable lifestyle. You can help by spending time with your parents or encouraging them to socialize, perhaps helping by providing assistance with transport or other things. You can also look out for the signs of depression. It's a good idea to be familiar with the symptoms of dementia too. You can find them at https://www.alz.org/what-is-dementia.asp.

Maximizing Quality of Life

A good quality of life can help to prevent a range of health problems. Staying active and social, as well as maintaining a good diet, all contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Your parents don't need to be living with you for you to encourage them to keep up healthy habits. You can encourage them to stay healthy, and help by making it easier for them. For example, if they need help getting around, you could drive them places or arrange transport. If they have trouble cooking healthy meals for themselves, you could help to provide meals with a meal delivery service or someone who could cook for them.

You can help your parents stay healthy in a number of ways. Just make sure you're not being overbearing or stepping on their toes.