When faced with being the primary caregiver for your aging parents, there are times when you need to take a step back and admit to yourself that you need a break and maybe even some outside assistance. Those in the “sandwich generation” that are caring for their own growing family, pursuing careers and caring for elderly parents have to understand that it’s all right to ask for help.
Having strangers come into your parents’ home may be an idea that you balk at, and if this is the case, adult daycare may be an option that will work for all concerned. There are adult daycare centers that cater to adults at every level of function. These centers are staffed by individuals who work to promote well-being and provide activities suited to your parent’s particular needs. When you add in the fact that going to an adult daycare even one day a week provides your aging loved one with the opportunity to interact and socialize with someone who isn’t a relative, the benefits become even more clear.
If you’re wondering whether the senior in your life is a candidate for adult daycare, here are some items to take into consideration:
- Are they seeking friendship and involvement in activities? Many centers offer games and even senior-friendly exercise programs
- Are they physically or mentally challenged, but not in need of 24-hour care, but still would welcome the ability to get out and interact with others?
- Are they alone for many hours of the day when the primary caregiver is involve with his or her family or career?
Even if you get push back from your relatives here are some benefits to those who attend adult daycare, for both them and you:
- You can rest assured they are in a secure environment that is suited to their particular level of health
- They can participate in educational and fun activities
- The mental stimulation they receive could improve their mental and physical health
- They may experience an enhanced feeling of independence
- They will have access to healthy meals and if they live alone, the idea of socializing with others enhances mental health
- There are arts and crafts sessions
- Musical or other entertainment is offered on special occasions
- They can participate in book clubs or film clubs and discussion groups. These activities and reading the book club book will keep them active and engaged even during visits
- Local outings are typically arranged
- They will be treated to holiday and birthday celebrations.
Many adult daycare facilities provide transportation to and from and if they don’t there may be an organization in your particular community that provides transportation for senior citizens. Involvement in an adult daycare program provides stimulation and involvement for your parents and a chance for them to interact and form friendships with their peers; it also offers the caregiver peace of mind and a much-needed break from caregiving.
If your aging relatives are concerned with being able to age-in-place their involvement in an adult daycare program may help them do just that. The benefits of their attendance are easy to see. Also, when your parents are aging in place, setting up them up with a home medical alarm system will help keep them safe during the hours when you can’t be there. At the push of a button on their medical alert pendant, they have immediate access to medical care through the Emergency Response Call Center at LifeFone.
- The Downside of Elderly Caregivers Caring for their Spouses (lifefoneblog.com)
- Where to Find Outside Homecare Services For Aging Adults (lifefoneblog.com)