6 Warning Signs That Your Parent Can’t Live Alone

by heatfeed

Most adult children dread the day when a parent’s health takes a turn for the worst. Even when the inevitable happens, they might have difficulty accepting that their mom or dad’s needs have changed and they require more support.

Ignorance is never bliss if an aging relative’s health is deteriorating at a slow or rapid pace. If you are unsure if they need more daily assistance, here are six warning signs that your parent can no longer live alone.

  1. They Are Hiding Problems

It is natural to occasionally forget about an appointment or to take a pill at the right time. However, frequent forgetfulness or missed appointments might be a sign that your loved one is struggling with memory or mobility problems. 

What’s more, a parent might become defensive when asked if they have taken their medication or attended an appointment, as they might understand they have a medical problem and are ashamed to admit it to themselves and others.

If your aging parent is hiding their mistakes or appears in denial, it could be a sign they need more help in their daily life.

  1. Neglecting Personal Hygiene

Neglecting personal hygiene is a clear warning sign that your mom or dad can no longer live alone. For example, they might have stopped showering, combing their hair, or brushing their teeth.

Hygiene problems could stem from a fear of slipping in the shower, forgetting about self-care, or could be due to depression and a lack of motivation. 

If you are worried about your parent’s hygiene issues and want to ensure they receive the support they need daily, assisted living could be the best solution for their needs. For instance, this supportive senior living community in Johns Creek, GA, can assist with daily living and even features a salon for men and women to improve self-care.

It could make a dramatic difference to their quality of life as they grow older and their health deteriorates.

  1. Weight Loss

Significant weight loss may indicate that your loved one is struggling with a health issue which you must address immediately. Even if your parent claims they haven’t had much of an appetite, they might be sick without realizing it, forgetting to eat, or clinically depressed (which can cause a poor appetite).

Also, they might be hiding the fact that they cannot use the kitchen safely or their throat feels sore when eating and drinking. If your mom or dad is losing weight at a rapid rate, don’t hesitate to book an appointment with their doctor for an assessment.

  1. Frequent Falls

Falling once might be an accident, but frequent falls indicate your mom or dad shouldn’t be left on their own. It is a major warning sign that a loved one needs more support, as they might be experiencing trouble with their mobility and perception. Some falls may stem from tripping over loose items, while others might be due to a loss of balance. 

Unfortunately, a fall in the home could lead to a painful injury, affect a senior’s cognitive health, or cause a stay in the hospital, which is why you cannot afford to ignore the problem. Bear in mind, an aging parent might attempt to hide one or more falls from you, which is why you should look for signs of injury, such as bruises or cuts on their skin.

  1. Cluttered Flooring

It is natural to pick up an item when dropping it on the floor. However, your loved one might be unable to do so if they have a mobility problem.

If you have noticed they have dropped food or their belongings on the floor and failed to pick them up, it might be a sign they are struggling to perform basic tasks in the home, such as tidying their home.

  1. Forgotten Bills

Your mom or dad has likely been paying their bills for decades without missing a payment. A few late payments might be a simple mistake, but it could indicate they are living with dementia.

If your parent cannot keep up with their finances, they might soon struggle to receive access to water, electricity, or gas, which can pose a risk to their health. Also, missed rent or mortgage payments could lead to eviction.

For this reason, you must take control of their finances sooner rather than later and identify the best way to support them moving forward, such as an assessment and diagnosis from a doctor.