5 Steps to Take When Holiday Visits Reveal the Need for Care

A woman shares a holiday meal with her elderly mother, while detecting some warnings signs that indicate the need for care.
The need for care often becomes apparent during holiday visits with older loved ones.

If you’ve recently returned home for the holidays only to discover that Mom seems increasingly forgetful or Dad is not walking as well as he was last year, you’re not alone. Many adult children face a holiday reality check each year when visiting family reveals a need for care that may have gone unnoticed throughout the rest of the year.

Noticing changes in a family member or friend during a seasonal visit is a common experience and can serve as an opportune time to discuss whether additional care is necessary in the home. With the support of family and friends, initiating a conversation about a care plan can be done with sensitivity and consideration. Here are some tips to guide you:

  • Share Your Concerns: Approach your loved ones openly and honestly. Express your concerns about their health, emphasizing that your intentions are rooted in care and support. Your genuine worry may motivate them to seek medical advice or make lifestyle changes.
  • Create a Sense of Planning: Engage in a conversation about your observations using concrete examples. Ask your loved one about their perspective on the situation and what they think might be going on. Collaboratively explore potential solutions and involve them in the decision-making process.
  • Address Safety Issues: Identify and discuss any safety concerns within the home. Create a plan together to address these issues and ensure a safe living environment. This collaborative approach helps the person feel involved and valued in the decision-making process.
  • Encourage a Medical Checkup: Propose the idea of a routine medical checkup and offer your assistance in scheduling the appointment. You can accompany the person to the doctor or help find someone else to attend the visit. Regular medical checkups are essential for early detection and management of health issues.
  • Contact the Doctor for Guidance: If the individual is dismissive of your concerns, consider reaching out to their doctor directly. Obtain the necessary permissions to discuss their medical information and share your insights with the healthcare provider. Your input can assist the doctor in understanding potential issues during upcoming visits.

Remember, the journey toward implementing a care plan is a gradual process, and having open, supportive conversations can pave the way for better understanding and cooperation among family members.

While initial conversations about care may not always go smoothly, it’s crucial to communicate your concerns. Decision-making doesn’t have to happen immediately, but it’s vital for your family members to be aware of your apprehensions and your willingness to collaborate on a plan that suits their needs.

If you find it challenging to broach the subject of in-home care with a loved one, consider seeking assistance from the experienced caregivers at Dakota Home Care in Bismarck, Lincoln, Fargo, or the surrounding areas. Contact us any time at (877) 691-0015 for assistance.

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