Because of the following circumstances; Mom or Dad might have to move in because of age, health issues or short term memory loss. Husband or wife might have health problems due to a past injury. They also may have learned that they are diabetic or have abnormal cell growth, and heaven for-bid, one of your children might have an accident or developed a problem from some type of bacterial infection. There can be many different kinds of scenarios, but all of a sudden you find yourself having to help someone through the rest of their life.
First I believe it is very important to get a positive mind set to help overcome the many new challenges that will mold the future of yourself and the person you are helping. This might be done by asking for support from close family members, finding a church or local support group. You might have a friend in healthcare that can give support or a referral. If possible, ask them what special needs they might have. My wife and I having been in healthcare for many years and have found that most people would like to have as many independent functions as possible. Put on their socks or clothes, makeup, shave and move freely around their environment. Maybe they want to do something as simple as raising the head of their bed to get into a different position for eating, watching TV or doing a small craft.
Next is to anticipate the environment they are in, with the worse thought being, what would happen if they were to fall? Is the rooms they are in “Safe”, bedroom, bathroom, dining or living room? Furniture with sharp edges or corners, grab bars by the toilet, tub or shower; are very important for support and balance, tripping hazards – throw rugs, uneven floors, slippery or is it slopped or will it be a ramp? Will they need some type of support for walking or moving around; Cane, walker, rollator or wheelchair? What other physical needs might there be in which an item; tool, equipment or product might help enhance the remaining time they spend in this life?
What items might be needed for their protection and your protection from getting and or spreading an infection; gloves, gowns, masks, sanitizing solutions, cleaning solutions that are safe and effective, containers that hold infectious waste and deodorizers to help overcome some very serious odors?
I believe the most important thing is our chance to show and give them a lot of Love, attention and support which will help to fill their and your emotional tank.