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Use Holiday Visits to Assess Senior Well-Being

Older-adult-reading-a-book-at-home

The holidays allow family members of all generations to see how one another is doing and whether anyone may need help or encouragement during this time.

If you are visiting a parent or senior loved one over the holidays, you can also use your visit as an opportunity to assess their well-being.

  1. Emotional State

Keep an eye out for changes in your loved one’s moods and behavior. You can’t always gauge someone’s emotional state over the telephone, even if you speak to them every day. Look for signs of depression and anxiety, including withdrawal from social activities, changes in sleep patterns, loss of interest in hobbies, and changes in basic home maintenance and personal hygiene. The latter can be an indicator of dementia or other physical ailments like dehydration, which often happens to elders in the winter months and can be serious. If you notice sudden odd behavior in your loved one, such as confusion or agitation, be sure to seek medical attention. These are common symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI), which is prevalent in seniors and easily resolved with antibiotics.

  1. Weight Loss

One of the most obvious signs of bad health, both physical and mental, is weight loss. Possible causes of noticeable weight loss could be cancer, depression, or dementia. Certain medications and aging, in general, can also change the way food tastes and/or result in a loss of appetite. If weight loss is evident, talk to your loved one about your concerns and schedule a doctor’s appointment to address the issue.

  1. Balance and Mobility

Pay close attention to the way your loved one moves and how they walk. A reluctance to walk, changes in gait or obvious pain during movement can be a sign of joint, muscle, or neurological problems. If your loved one is unsteady on their feet, they may be at risk of falling, which can cause severe injury or worse. If you notice changes in their mobility and coordination, make an appointment with their doctor to discuss options to keep them safe and mobile, such as pain management, physical therapy, and mobility aids.

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Guest — Saint Anthony
Thanks for sharing such a knowledge article. I am glad to know about some of the unique points in your blog which is very useful. ... Read More
Friday, 13 December 2019 05:42
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