How do I know if my aging loved one needs help?

Many seniors, or those with an ongoing illness, are hesitant to ask for help. This could be because they don’t want to be a burden or because they’re afraid of losing their independence. Some will even go to great lengths to conceal their issues. If this goes on too long, it can end tragically, with a stroke, serious fall, or worse. This usually acts as a wakeup call for the family. But there are warning signs that can indicate it’s time to get your loved one help before something dire occurs:

  • Change in appetite
  • Frequent falls, with or without injury
  • Significant weight loss or gain
  • Difficulty performing routine activities of daily living
  • Problems coordinating medical care
  • Regular emergency room or hospital visits
  • Failure to take medications as prescribed
  • Confusion, forgetfulness, anxiety, or depression
  • Refusal to bathe, wash clothing, or clean the house
  • Problems paying bills or completing paperwork
  • Alcohol or drug abuse
  • Isolation or refusal to leave the house
  • Deteriorating relationships with others
  • Calls frequently about the same issues

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