Good morning everyone and welcome to Artful aging with Amy I'm your host Amy Friesen and on today's show I'm going to give you my top tips
to help you with a harmonious caregiving experience when it comes to caregiving for your aging parents.
The caregiving Journey looks different for every family but I'm hoping that the Nuggets that I can give you today will help you have
a smoother day a smoother life a smoother caregiving experience and allow you to look at things a little bit different and more so from the eye of the person that you're caregiving for
so without further Ado I'm going to give you my top five things and top 5 mistakes that caregivers often have
come up in their lives so the number one mistake that many caregivers make is allowing their family Dynamics to interfere with the caring for their loving their loved one who's aging.
Now family conflict comes up all of our Lives we don't get along with our siblings we don't get along with extended family our parents whoever it is it you know has scar tissue in our lives and I can totally understand that,
the difference is when your caregiving for a senior loved one and you have other people that are involved,
with possibly the decision or the everyday tasks it's important to not let family conflict come in the way of that.
It can be really difficult to navigate and conversations are very hard.
But when you're caring for someone you need to be able to put their needs ahead of yours or the current conflict in the family because,
I was too often I've seen family conflict override what actually needs to be done to care for a senior loved one and it causes a lot of problems like not getting the proper care in,
not having proper communication about the person that you're caring for not being able to make decisions properly.
And so it is a bit of a task but one of the main concerns is letting this conflict hung between the care so remember to always put the loved one that you're caring for their care needs first.
Number two a lot of families have fear of planning their end-of-life Journey many many seniors don't want to talk about it
that's been faux pas they don't want to discuss anything they think things will work out many children of those seniors don't want to talk about it because it's uncomfortable and a lot of people have poor communication skills when it comes to families.
And so a lot of people don't actually talk about end-of-life planning the problem with that is.
Everybody's going to get there and so if you don't put a plan in place you're essentially planning to fail and that makes things a lot more complicated.
So for the seniors who are not talking about a consider that you're going to have.
Perhaps your children or a loved one take over your Affairs or help with your Affairs or help with your care.
And they're going to need to know what to do and as a child coming at it you're going to need to know what to do and so having that open communication,
will take time will take persistence and will be a bit exhausting but to get that out in the open
essentially open the door so that you can provide the proper care and attention to your parent as they age and know that their wishes are being fulfilled.
The third mistake that I find a lot of families are making is that they're not completing their medical and legal documents so it goes hand-in-hand with end-of-life planning but specifically document based.
Many people that I work with do not have a power of attorney filled out or they do not have a will or they do not have Advanced Care directives.
Now if you don't know what any of this is have a look at one of our early episodes to have to know what.
Each document is and I will make sure to link that in the show notes.
Essentially if you don't have these documents in place you are leaving everything up to chance and it could cost your family a lot of money.
Not to mention that if the power of attorney is not in place and something happens catastrophic catastrophically or a crisis the documents are in place therefore people can't help to make decisions.
The other problem with that is if you do have your power of attorney in place or you do have your will and things like that your advance directives make sure that people understand
who's doing what who is the power of attorney who's going to help make the decisions because they also need to plan for their life and so that is really important that
you know as a daughter I need to know what I'm responsible for in my parents Life as a power of attorney so that I can then plan my own life I think that that is
really overlooked by many families but there's a lot of us that are caregiving for children and caregiving for there's our senior parents or our aging parents that
you know really just want to run our own lives efficiently and effectively and so the more information that we have to do that the better.
The fourth mistake that I find a lot of families making is remaining ignorant on purpose.
There are a lot of families that know something is up but refused to go and have a conversation with a doctor or a professional about it for fear of the unknown.
There's a lot of families that are making decisions that have for instance somebody has dementia and their family or they think.
Might have Dementia or Alzheimer's and their family but they don't want to go and get it diagnosed because they want to continue their life they want to continue planning their trips and the planning what they were doing.
Without having that piece of knowledge except for the fact that.
If your remaining ignorant on purpose that means that you know there's something going on and if you leave it too long it often just gets worse and you often find yourself in a crisis there's lots of people.
That have not you know got a diagnosis for instance or had a conversation.
That love to travel in fact we've had somebody you know we've had multiple families but we've had somebody recently that was traveling with their husband who has dementia.
And everything went out of whack on their trip because sometimes that can be a trigger the different environment the unknown can sometimes be a trigger for people who have dementia.
And so they found out.
More than they need to know on that trip but then they needed to get their husband back home they needed to get them cared for and it was really a crisis,
crisis situation so if you think there's something going on you're better off to have it looked at so that you can deal with it appropriately.
And hopefully not lose as much as you think you're going to lose in you know travel or in lifestyle.
Because if your planning properly then you can make those tweaks now as opposed to the folks that keep their head in the sand,
and things keep progressing whether or not you know about it and so it's really important to have a good understanding so that you can make better decisions for yourself and for the person you're caring for.
The fifth mistake people make is not listening to the person who is the.
Requiring care and so I've made a bit of a name of myself in retirement because I was known that.
You know when you came in to see me in a retirement home I would always be speaking to the person who is moving into the home not specifically to the you know the loved one that brought them or somebody else with them.
Now the thing about that is is that the person the senior for instance there the decision maker,
there are different reasons why they might not be able to make decisions on their own but they're the person that you know the care is happening for and so it's really important whether or not they have full understanding of what's going on,
that you speak and listen to them and what their needs are hearing someone out to figure out you know what their wishes are how they think things should go,
and all of that can be really difficult but really important so that not only are you hearing them out maybe there's something that you didn't know that you could accommodate for.
But also then that person feels her.
And so a lot of people are doing that and especially with folks that have cognitive impairments thinking I'll just make the decisions but I
you know urge you to look at it a different way and really have them involved in as many decisions as possible
even if you have to tweak those decisions afterwards at least they've had their say and at least at that point you as a caregiver can be at peace with the Nexus engines you have to make as a caregiver and
you know if there's not a cognitive issue then the people that are making a move and you're helping helping them to choose things or getting care and you're helping them to make decisions there
or Finance then at least they're in the loop and they're making those decisions with you as opposed to having them made for them.
And that's it for today I hope that you found today's topic valuable and that you will share with your network so that other people can find Artful aging a little bit easier.