Planning a vacation, but you are not sure if your siblings are willing to take care of your parent? Respite care is the type of care you need.
Respite care is a short-term break for families who take care of one or more family members. Although it is beneficial for a family caregiver to take a short break from caregiving, many hesitate to hire another caregiver. They worry about how their loved one will react to a complete stranger.
This is a common situation, and many caregivers wonder what to do to better prepare seniors for respite care. You may perform several actions to support your senior so they won’t feel awkward when a caregiver arrives:
Let Your Older Adult Meet a Caregiver in Advance
Once you choose a caregiver from an agency, ask him or her to come over for a coffee. When seniors meet caregivers in advance, they will have more confidence. A meeting is also great for discussing the expectations and responsibilities. They can learn a lot about your loved one and see in person what they are expected to help with.
Make Their Room More Comfortable
If their mobility is limited, creating a comfortable atmosphere in the room is essential. Place a framed family photo by their bed. Bring several books or movies if they prefer. Perhaps they like crosswords or magazines. Anything that will fulfill the time while you are away is welcome.
Make sure they have everything for personal care, too. Toothpaste, shampoo, moist wipes, etc. Place a warm blanket in their room and put proper clothes in the wardrobe. Ask them if they lack anything, so you can provide it before going on vacation.
Organize Meetings With Other Family Members
Your siblings and other family members may be too busy to take care of your older adult, but this doesn’t mean they can’t visit them once in a while. Talk to them and see if they are available when you are away. One-hour visits won’t take too much time, and your senior will feel less lonely.
It is great if they live nearby, but the problem is if the whole family is on the other side of the country. Think about your senior’s friends who are in the neighborhood, and see if they are willing to stop by. A caregiver will always be there for conversation, but it is also good to have someone that they have known for years or even decades.
Visit Them Often
If you are not planning a vacation, but only want to take a break from caregiving, call your parent and visit them often. Bring a meal so you can eat together. You can also watch a movie or listen to their favorite music. Tell your older adult about other family members and what they are doing. Make plans together for what you will do in the near future. It is always good to have something to look forward to.
Follow these tips to support your older adult during respite care. The transition will go smoothly, and they won’t notice you’re gone. You will be back to take care of them in the blink of an eye.
Respite care is also a great thing if you want to find a permanent caregiver. Short-term caregiving is a great way to introduce the whole process to your loved one, so they won’t be too repulsed when you ask them to hire a caregiver.
If you are still feeling uneasy about leaving your loved one, read more about how to vacation without feeling guilty.
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