Long Distance Caregiving: Get Help With Home Care in Seattle
Written By : Stephanie Roberts
Long-distance caregiving can be a particularly challenging task. How do you really know what’s going on?
You can ask, sure. But hearing “I’m fine” doesn’t provide a lot of information. And you have trust that you’re hearing the whole story. Really the only time you have to assess the situation is when you visit, which depending on the distance between you two, might not be very often.
So here are a few things to look out for when you do visit. Check the stove top, is it dusty? This would mean your parent is no longer cooking for themselves. Check the fridge and pantry. Is the food beyond the expiration date? If it is then your parent may not be shopping regularly and suggests a lower coping mechanism. Also check the bathroom. Is the shower wet, or the towels? Fewer showers is a sign your loved one may not be managing very well. If you see signs that suggest they are no longer caring for themselves as well they should than you may want to take some action.
You can talk to neighbors and have them contact you if there’s a problem. Or you can call a local home care agency. Maybe a caregiver can do grocery shopping and light housekeeping once a week. It’s important to assess the situation and address it as early as possible. Change is never easy for your parent but making sure they are well cared for is essential. So this may mean you have to stand up to them, this takes courage, but it must be done. Once you see signs that one system is failing (no longer cooking or cleaning for example) you can assume that more systems are failing as well (no longer socializing). All of these things will determine the amount of care needed.