Being a long-distance caregiver can be emotionally draining, but many people don’t have a choice. Seniors are not always willing to move closer to family, which is understandable if they are comfortable and happy where they are. But for the adult children who feel responsible for their well-being, this distance can be a source of worry. At Pacifica Senior living we have the resources that you need.
The good news is that it has never been easier to keep in touch with someone from a distance, or to stay up to date with their health. Here are a few small ways you can ensure your senior loved one is thriving, even if you cannot check up on them regularly in person.
Stay Informed On Their Healthcare
As a long-distance caregiver, it is important for you to stay informed about any potential changes to Medicare that may affect them. If your senior loved one has trouble staying up to date through the internet, there are simple ways you can help to ensure their health care is in order. For example, Medicare has plenty of useful resources with key information on enrollment, discovering what is available in your state, and supplemental plans to help cover additional costs.
Encourage Them To Socialize
As people grow older, their social circles tend to become more limited. This can be due to health reasons or simply their friends passing or moving away. These experiences can result in feelings of loneliness and isolation, which can have terrible effects on their health and well-being.
Make sure you are encouraging your senior loved one to engage in as many social activities as their health allows. This article by Forbes has some great tips on what you can do to help.
Show Them Useful Technology
Teaching seniors technology can be an exhausting and drawn-out process, which is why many people avoid it. However, modern technology can do wonders for your loved ones’ well-being, so it is a good idea to take the time to walk them through it.
A few you may want to show them include:
- Skype or Facetime, for easy communication with the family, share our community Facebook pages with them and your family!
- Uber or a similar rideshare service so they can get convenient transport to any events or medical appointments.
- Spotify, because familiar music can have a hugely therapeutic effect on seniors.
- A puzzle app to keep their minds sharp.
Invest In Remote Monitoring
Speaking of tech, there are various products on the market that aim to improve long-distance caregiving by making monitoring your loved one’s health a breeze. However, gone are the days of alarm-blaring necklaces and other intrusive and even embarrassing solutions. According to Care, these solutions have become increasingly discreet and high-tech, making the experience far more seamless and practical for everyone involved.
Don’t Ignore Mental Health
When you have a senior loved one living far away, it can be easy to make their physical health the main focus of your conversations. However, it is important to talk about a variety of subjects during catch ups, not just to make these exchanges more meaningful but to identify any problems that may not have to do with physical illness.
In particular, you need to watch out for any symptoms of mental illness like depression or anxiety. These things can be hard to talk about, so they may not tell you directly – you need to be able to identify the problem, as well as the underlying issues that need to be addressed.
There is no reason why your senior loved one can’t live a happy and healthy life, even if you are far away. There are countless resources and technologies that can help, but the natural reluctance of seniors to engage with the internet means that it’s partly up to you to guide them through the process. With your help, your loved one will be able to live independently while still feeling supported by their family, which is exactly what most seniors desire from their golden years.
At Pacifica Senior living we have the resources that you need. If you would like more information on a community near you, please contact us today. We look forward to meeting you