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6 Warning Signs to Start Considering Senior Housing

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August 06, 2015

6 Warning Signs to Start Considering Senior Housing

Are you struggling to decide when is the right time to consider moving your loved one into a senior living facility? Do you know all of the options available and are you aware of the signs that it is time for them to find a safer place?

If you have an elderly loved one that you are thinking may not be safe in their own home it is time to assess their safety. There are typical warning signs to consider it is important to notice warning signs that they may not be safe by themselves in their own home. It may be appropriate to start considering different senior housing options for your loved one.

Start paying attention to these warning signs to consider senior housing:

1. Family member isn’t leaving the house.

As we get older it is common to not go out every evening, however seniors should still be interested in visiting with friends and family every now and then. It is a warning sign to someone’s health if they are not interested in leaving their home if it is “too much work”. They may be struggling with their heart and blood pressure, or they may be depressed. 

2. Loved one is afraid to drive their car.

If your loved one isn’t leaving their house simply because they are afraid to drive this is a big warning sign that they may need to be someplace where they can socialize and not have to worry about driving their car. If they are in a senior housing facility they will be able to make friends, socialize, and some places even offer services to drive seniors to events. Some facilities are also near bus lines and this can help your loved one get up and off their couch and out socializing.

3. Freezer is full of TV dinners.

The next time you are visiting your loved one be sure to look in their fridge and freezer. If their freezer is packed full of pre-made frozen meals it might be a good sign that they are not getting the nutrition that they need. They may not feel safe to use their oven and stove and enjoy the convenience of TV dinners, however this is not safe for their long-term health.  It will not provide them with the nutrients that their body needs.

4. Home hasn’t been cleaned.

Everyone knows that maintaining the household chores is a workout, however is it something that your loved one is able to continue maintaining safely? Is your loved one regularly cleaning their bathrooms, floors, and kitchen? It might be good to take a look around and see if things look clean or if there is bacteria growing, dust building up, or dirt on the floor. If your loved one is not maintaining their own home it may be a sign to you that it is too much work and unsafe for them to maintain. They shouldn’t have to live in a home that isn’t clean, and it can cause allergies and other harm to their health.

5. Avoiding doctor’s appointment or regular health care checkups.

Check-in with your loved one and see if they are making sure to maintain check-ups with their doctors, dentist appointments, and overall health care needs. If your loved one is avoiding going to these appointments try to figure out the root cause. Ask them if it is simply that they don’t care, can’t safely get there, or don’t want to find out if something is wrong with their health. No matter what the reason may be, it should be a red flag to you that they need additional care. It should be concerning to you, no matter what the reason is, if your loved one is avoiding regular check-ins with the doctor.

6. Loved one has a health related issue that requires supervision.

If your loved one has a health condition that needs special attention, or requires specific medication it might be time to consider whether they need assistance with maintaining their health. Several senior housing options will provide supervision to your loved one to make sure that they do not fall, have issues with eyesight, or are close by in case of a heart attack or stroke.

It can be a tough decision to know when the right time to move your loved one into a senior housing facility. Of course the most important thing is the person’s safety and well-being. If your loved one is living alone or if whoever they are living with is unable to take care of their health needs it is time to discuss options.

The conversation that is necessary with your loved ones might seem a bit daunting. One of our past articles discusses how to start that conversation (whether it be home care or senior housing placement). Here is an article on advice for starting the conversation of elder care: When Should I Start Home Care for my Elderly Parents?

If you have any questions regarding when or how to start looking into senior housing options we have expert Care Solution Advisors available to answer any questions. They are sure to sit down with you and discuss your situation and will help you come up with the best plan of care.