Did visiting over bank holiday make you worry a relative is needing extra support at home?
Did you know after each bank holiday, homecare services across the country see a sharp rise in call numbers?
Families call with concerns about the well-being of loved ones having spent time with them over the bank holiday. As society changes, and families grow ever more dispersed, the time between visits can grow from weeks to months.
Have you noticed any of the following warning signs? If so, it may be time to seek extra support as they be maybe unable to live life independently.
- Poor hygiene Are they washing and changing their clothes regularly? Do they have body odour? Are they neglecting their nails and teeth?
- Poor eating habits Have they lost weight? Do they have a poor appetite? Are they able to still cook for themselves? Look in their fridge and cupboards– is there any healthy food? Is there any rotten food or products well past their sell by date?
- Forgetfulness Do they have lots of unopened letters? Are they continually missing GP/Dental/Hospital appointments? Are they losing money or paying the same bill twice? Look at the cooker/oven – a good indicator are scorched saucepans, it shows they may be forgetting that dinner is cooking on the hob.
- Neglecting their home Look around – especially in their toilet and bedroom – are they changing the sheets? Is it not as clean as you remember?
- Local support network Do they have local friends or neighbours they can call on if they are needing extra help?
- Mobility Can they get out of bed, up the stairs and into the bath or shower without slipping or falling? A good indicator is checking whether there are any bruises or cuts.
- Driving Can they still safely drive? This one of the most difficult conversations to have – but one that should be raised sooner than the others. If your parents aren’t able to drive safely anymore, you’ll need to persuade them to give up the car keys or take them away legally if necessary. (An excellent way to determine whether they are able to drive safely is to check their car for new dents, scratches, etc…)