Family Matters: Caring For Aged Relatives

Family Matters: Caring For Aged Relatives

As we get older, our responsibilities seem to grow. Not only do we have the next generation to look after and provide for. But we also have our parents to worry about as well. In fact, it can seem like everyone needs our care and attention. But what sort of help and care do our older relatives actually need? Read on for some advice.

Meaningful relationships

First of all, it is important to ensure that our older relative continues to have meaningful relationships both with the members of their family and with their community. It can be all too easy for the elderly to become isolated due to a mix of physical and social boundaries. But their quality of life is negatively affected when this happens.

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One way of ensuring that they keep in touch with family members that aren’t local is to introduce them to an instant form of communication. For example, if they have family abroad or in another state, using Facebook Messenger or Skype, which you can download at, can help them keep in contact. Then they can feel they are more involved in their lives.
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Yes, it may feel a little challenging to set them up in these services at first. But they are relatively simple, and with a little practice their confidence should increase to the point where they are happy to use them on their own.

It can also be helpful to ensure that your older relatives are involved in their local community. There are several ways of doing this. The first is the most obvious, and it’s introducing them to a community centre. Where folks of a similar age can hang out, play games and take part in the activities that are put on for them.

The only problem with that is that some seniors are a little stubborn, stating that they don’t want to spend time with ‘old people.’ Even though they qualify for that title themselves! If this is the case with your relatives, then it might be more constructive to suggest that they get involved in a club or activity that is run for everyone. Then it’s the interests of the people that is bringing them together and not just their age.

Medical care

As our beloved relatives get older, sometimes their health can become more fragile. That is why it is essential to ensure they can get the best healthcare possible. This can mean helping them to get to appointments, or even keeping an eye on them and calling in the doctor if you think it is necessary.

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Some folks will only need small amounts of help with things like going to pick up their prescriptions once in awhile. Whereas others may need much more such as help finding the best residential sheltered accommodation.

In some cases, it can also be helpful to seek out nursing or end of life care, like the care offered at Then you know that they will be as comfortable as possible during this difficult time.

Physical fitness

Physical fitness isn’t just something for the young, it can help you feel and look good all through our lives, and our older relative can definitely benefit from it.

Some seniors run marathons at 70! But that isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s OK. But it is important to help your older friends and relatives be as active as possible. The best way to do this is to find something that they like to do that gets them up and moving.

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For some seniors, this could be a dance class or a regular round of golf. For other with more limited mobility it could be supported aerobics such as aqua or chair. Which enable them to move while not putting too much strain on their joints.

Diet is also vital for keeping your ageing relative as well as possible. But this can be problematic for several reasons. The first this that if they live on their own, older relative can sometimes struggle to find the motivation or energy to cook for themselves. That is why it’s a fantastic idea to consider a service like meals on wheels. Which deliver freshly cooked meals to those that cannot provide them of themselves.

Another issue can be that older folk sometimes end up eating less that they would have before. Of course, this can be a concern, as it may further compound any health issue that they are struggling with. But how is possible to deal with this?

Well, firstly, if they are making or have access to food and raiment eating it, then it could be due to an underlying health problems so it’s probably best to seek some medical advice.
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Or sometimes it can be caused by having to eat alone. Remember eating isn’t just a physical activity, but a social function too, and always eating alone can be hard. That is why it’s a nice idea to have a regular time when you older friends and relatives come to visit you for a meal and a catch-up.  


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