Caregiving for My Parents

As people age, their needs and abilities change. They may have trouble getting around the house or experience difficulty driving, and they may not remember things as easily as they once did. And adult children of aging parents may notice them having problems with their finances, perhaps, or their personal hygiene.

We want to support our older loved ones’ desire to live independently, even when we have concerns about their safety and well-being. But how do we know when it’s time to step in? Start by calling Johnson County Public Health at 684-2564 and make an appointment to discuss local resources and your family’s situation. Then consider the following:

Physical Health: Have they been diagnosed with any chronic diseases, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis or emphysema? Or other diseases such as bowel or bladder problems, heart disease, stroke or cancer? Do they have vision or hearing problems, excessive weight loss or gain, or difficulty walking? Make a list of health professionals they currently see, and add any recent hospitalizations.

Mental Health: Have they been diagnosed with any psychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety or psychosis? Have they been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia? Are they showing signs of confusion, disorientation or isolation? What about mood swings or forgetfulness? Sadness or loneliness?

Medication Use: What medications are they currently taking? What is the dosage, and how often do they take the medications?

We will help you determine what assistance your family might need and help you to find and take advantage of the resources within our community.

For additional information about paying for senior care with Medicaid waivers, click here.