Changing Habits and Learning New Things
What does this mean? Essentially, that you need to get your parents to acknowledge the fact that they’re getting older. That there are things that they must do differently if they want to stay in their own home (or yours) for as long as they possibly can.
Part of that is getting them to ask for help when they need it. But the other part is having them do what they can to stay healthy (both mentally and physically). So they can continue aging at home by remaining independent for as long as possible — and in as many ways as possible. Getting them to think about and plan for their longevity.
To that end, they should make some age-related changes that can improve their life rather than detracting from it. These include actively working on:
- improving their diet
- engaging in age-appropriate exercises
- keeping regular medical appointments
- participating in activities designed to sharpen their minds
Related to that last one, it can be incredibly helpful if you can get them to attain a bit of tech savvy. Don’t worry, they don’t have to start designing apps or anything!
But if your parents are at least able to learn how to navigate their smartphone, it can make a huge difference. Both in keeping them connected and easing the burden of lots of everyday tasks. For one example, they could start ordering their groceries online and having them delivered.
Some kind of physical activity, too, is vital at this stage to slow down the body’s natural decline. Unless they’re overweight, the goal should largely be to maintain their current condition with light physical activity that keeps them active and their muscles engaged.
All of these changes serve to keep them self-sufficient longer and minimize the outside help needed to maintain their quality of life.