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Three Big Senior Fears And What You Can Do To Help

Jancare excels at providing specialized private home care to seniors thanks to the hard work and dedication from the nurses on our staff. While on the job, we’ve learned about many of the different fears that seniors have about their age. One of their most popular fears is not being able to live at home. However, with Jancare’s services, we always make sure to see our clients in their own homes in order to keep them at ease.

There are other fears that seniors have as well, but you can help make them feel better too! There is a great article written by Daystar Retirement Village called “Understanding Your Aging Parents: Seniors’ Top 10 Fears”. In the post, writer Jim Fuller covers ten senior fears and ways that you can help within your family. We picked out three fears that we feel are the most important below, but if you find this topic interesting, we recommend that you read the full article by clicking here. Here’s an excerpt from the website:

  1. Loss of independence
    We spend our whole lives learning to be independent and take care of ourselves. The thought of turning that responsibility over to others is frightening. Remember when you couldn’t wait to turn 18 because you’d legally be independent of your parents? That independence is something we all cherish because it’s the core of living life on our terms. As parents age, they begin to see this independence slowing slipping away as their cognitive or physical health deteriorates. It’s essential they keep as much control over their lives as possible, so always try to ask if you can help or offer options instead of making major decisions for them. For example, instead of saying “Don’t change that light bulb, you might fall!” ask “Would you like me to check or change any light bulbs?”

    You can also frame your assistance in the form of a gift by printing a gift certificate for five kitchen cleaning sessions, yard work, or similar tasks that they may be worried about not being able to do on their own. By reassuring them that you enjoy helping you will reassert their independence for as long as possible.

  2. Declining health
    Your aging parents see their physical condition deteriorating. They wonder how much longer they’ll be able to do the things they enjoy. Declining health, of course, goes hand in hand with loss of independence and is often a tough subject to talk about. Your parents may reach a point where they need daily assistance with personal care or can no longer safely maintain their home but resist help because they fear they’ll lose their independence or home.

    Your best bet is to research options and have a candid talk with your folks about the results you’ve found. The Institute on Aging reports 91 percent of seniors have one or more chronic conditions, so your parents’ declining health is not isolated. Physical limitations increase with age, and 65 percent of seniors requiring long-term help rely on family and friends. Another 30 percent use paid assistance, so you should determine what they need now and may need in the future and plan accordingly. Check local resources and insurance policies and discuss their health care needs and possible future needs, so they don’t have to worry about “what ifs.”

  3. Not being able to live at home
    For most seniors, home is much more than the house they live in. It’s a place packed with memories. It’s familiar. It feels safe, and it’s a huge part of their identity. Like most fears, talking about the subject will help alleviate the stress. Discuss future options such as hiring a live-in companion, downsizing, and senior housing. Be sure to listen carefully to your parents’ opinions. Help them research their options, explore the cost of care, and define housing options rather than demand they downsize and move.

    Your county will have a senior resource division where you can get information on various options. Get a list of local providers for in-home help, live-in companions, and similar programs that will help your parents stay in their home. Research retirement and assisted living communities in your area and take a tour of the three your parents like best. Remind them they are looking at options, not planning a move. Once they understand the different possibilities for various scenarios, they won’t have to worry about what the unknown future might bring.

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