Being an only child has some perks. Growing up, you never had to experience sibling rivalry or fights, and you also had the benefit of getting all the love and attention of your parents. As an adult without siblings, however, you may now realize that it is your turn to provide all of the care and attention your parents need.
You will find advantages to this as well. You are able to make all of the essential decisions without having to get the approval of siblings. You also don’t have to worry about conflicts and heightened emotions that often manifest among siblings during the stress of caring for aging parents.
The disadvantage, however, is the fact that it is a tremendous responsibility to provide care for your parents on your own. The following caregiving advice for only children can help.
- Prepare early. The need for help at home as your parents get older is highly likely. So even if they are active and healthy now, it’s a wise idea to begin to formulate a plan for their future care needs. Sit down together and have an honest and open discussion about their wishes. This discussion should include a review of finances and confirmation that all important paperwork is in place: power of attorney, healthcare directive, will, etc.
- Watch out for signs. Keep an eye on your parents’ ability to manage everyday activities of living independently. Are they paying bills and balancing the checkbook? Is the home being cared for and kept clean? Are they keeping up with personal hygiene? Are there any red flags of dangers such as cluttered rooms that could cause a fall, scorch marks on pans that could indicate forgetfulness when cooking, etc.?
- Bring in reinforcements. If you suspect your parents might benefit from some help at home, it’s a good idea to first schedule a consultation with the doctor to go over your concerns. A trusted professional can often have more of an influence on older adults and the need for intervention to ensure safety.
Once the need for support at home is established, you will want to build a good support system. Caring for aging parents is never something that should be undertaken solo. This can result in depression, caregiver burnout, and a host of other health complications.
How In-Home Care Can Help
As an only child, partnering with Hearts at Home In-Home Care is an exceptional way to maintain a healthy life balance while making sure your parents’ needs are met. Our fully trained and experienced care professionals are here with just the right level of care your parents need, through services like:
- Specialized dementia care
- Light housekeeping and laundry
- Medication reminders
- Meal planning and prep
- Transportation and errand-running
- Fall prevention
- Assistance with baths/showers, getting dressed, as well as other personal care needs
- And much more
Get in touch with us at 913-440-4209 for more information. We can discuss your concerns and work with you to formulate a solution that works for you and your loved ones. We are proud to serve families throughout Mission Hills, Lenexa, Leawood, and the surrounding areas. Visit our Service Area page to see if our award-winning home care services are available in your community.