St Louis Park, MN News Articles
Planning Time Away from Your Aging Loved OneIf you are a primary caregiver for a senior loved one, or if you coordinate care from afar, taking time away from your important role can seem impossible. However, taking a “vacation” from your caregiving role is crucial to your own mental and physical health. According to the Centers for Disease Control, unpaid caregivers (such as spouses, daughters, sons, or other loved ones) are more likely to experience depression and anxiety, as well as to have compromised immune function. Getting out of the house, or stepping away from your role, keeps you healthy and helps you be a better support system for your senior loved one.
This time away from your caregiving role is called respite, and part of respite planning is securing respite care for your loved one. Here are a few ways that you can plan for respite care so that you, and your loved one, are ready for your time away.
Plan in Advance, When Possible
Planning your respite time in advance gives you the best chance to prepare. Here at Visiting Angels, we suggest planning respite time on a regular basis, such as once per month. Knowing that you take four hours away from home the third Sunday of every month can keep you committed to taking time away. Having a regular schedule can also keep your loved one used to another person in a caregiving role while you are gone. Our Visiting Angels love to get to know new clients, and respite care gives us the chance to build that relationship and gain your loved one’s trust as we learn their preferences.
If you are planning a more extended respite, such as a vacation or weekend away, getting a respite care provider (such as Visiting Angels) on the books can not only make the transition smoother, it is also one less thing to worry about as your trip draws near.
Have a Relationship in Case of Emergencies
Sometimes, you don’t have the luxury of planning for respite in advance. You may need to get out of town for an unexpected business trip or need to miss a regular visit with your loved one due to another spontaneous situation. In these cases, having a relationship with Visiting Angels can be especially important. We are available to help out in these emergency respite situations and can step in for caregiving duties with minimal notice, however if we know you and your loved one, it makes the transition even easier for everyone involved.
Keep Records Updated
Finally, keep your loved one’s records updated and in a central location. Print out a current medication list, as well as doctor phone numbers, allergies, and emergency contact numbers every month or so to assure the information is updated. If you have had any changes since our last visit with your loved one, give our Visiting Angels office a call so that we can update our files as well. This extra step assures our caregivers have accurate information.
Having regular respite care, as well as having an established relationship with our office, can make your time away – whether planned or emergency – more restful for you and safer for your loved one. We would love to get to know your situation; give us a call to set up an appointment with our caring office staff.
Fall Memories to Make With Your Senior Loved One
The temperatures are dropping, leaving are falling, and pumpkin spice flavors are everywhere – it must be autumn in the Midwest! Whether or not fall is your favorite season, there are certainly many opportunities to connect with your senior loved one these next few months. Autumn encourages us to get a bit cozier and slow down a bit, which makes fall visits with your loved one even sweeter. Here are just a few ways that you can make your next visit a bit more special during this season.
Spice Up Your Coffee
Enjoying a cup of coffee or tea during your visit is a wonderful way to encourage conversation and connection. This month, consider taking advantage of the seasonal flavors by making your own spiced drinks. Try this easy recipe for a pumpkin spiced latte, or add cinnamon sticks and a dash of nutmeg to warm apple cider before pouring into mugs to enjoy.
Go To the Orchard or Patch
Part of the Midwest autumn experience is the apple orchard or pumpkin patch. You don’t have to be a child to enjoy the sights and smells of this seasonal outing, and you will love taking it in with your older loved one. To get the most out of your visit, call ahead of time to ask if there is a less crowded time that you could attend. Assure that your loved one can transfer safely in and out of your car, and bring along a walker or wheelchair if needed. You don’t have to worry about heading out to pick your own produce, but instead spend time in the barn area. Grab an apple cider donut or a few small fall gourds to decorate your loved one’s mantle before you head home. Remember, your trip doesn’t have to be hours long to be meaningful; be sure that you leave before either of you are exhausted.
Make a Pot of Favorite Soup
There’s nothing quite like the season’s first pot of soup. Spend your next visit chopping, simmering, and preparing your favorite recipe together. Make plenty so that you can enjoy a bowl together, and freeze what is left in individual portions for your loved one to enjoy throughout the month.
Decorate a Bit
Your loved one will enjoy a bit of seasonal décor at home, and decorating together can be a fun way to reminisce and connect. Don’t bring out every fall themed decoration, instead choosing a few favorite pieces to display in places that your loved one will see often. Assure that your decorations don’t require a lot of maintenance and are not fall risks in the home. Finally, choose decorations that offer a bit of sensory stimulation as well. For example, scented potpourri in a pumpkin bowl is lovely to look at and to smell.
This autumn, make your visits with your senior loved one extra special by indulging a bit in the season. You will both love the new opportunities to enjoy together. Remember, our caregivers would love to help you have successful visits, or can bring the fall experience to your loved one if you are far away. Give us a call to learn more about our varied services that can support your loved one at home.
- Top Senior Safety Concerns
- Tips for Managing Transition
- A Day at the Fair: Activities for Your Aging Loved One
- Keys to Keeping Calm
- Can Mom Live at Home if She Has Alzheimer’s Disease?
- How Visiting Angels Can Support Seniors Living with Dementia
- Summer Activities to Plan with Your Aging Loved One
- Hidden Fall Risks in Your Home
- Healthy Sleep Habits for Older Adults
- Surprising Ways Visiting Angels Can Make Your Life Better
- How Socialization and Purpose Can Positively Affect Aging
- Staying Physically and Mentally Active Leads to Successful Aging
- Activities to Improve Fine Motor Mobility for Aging Hands
- Our Favorite Routine-Breakers to Increase Critical Thinking Skills
- Benefits of Companion Care
- The Toll Isolation Takes
- Ideas to Decrease Isolation
- How to Turn Around a Negative Interaction
- 5 Senior Resources Not to Miss
- Long Distance Caregiving: Apps and Technology That Can Help
- Freedom from Osteoarthritis Pain
- Keeping Seniors Safe in the Summertime
- How to Connect with Your Aging Father
- How Home Care Can Translate to Independence
- Fitness Every Day
- Honoring Loss
- Household Chores to Involve Your Loved One In
- How to Use Music to Connect with Your Aging Loved One
- Areas of the Home to Attend to When Your Loved One Wanders
- How Much Do We Love our Angels? Let Us Count the Ways
- Ways to Show Your Loved One You Care
- 5 Easy Indoor Activities to Foster Connection This Winter
- Staying Safe This Winter
- Holiday Memories to Make with Your Loved One This Year
- The Gift of Respite Care
- 5 Things to Say to Calm Dementia Related Anxiety
- Holiday Gift Guide: Seniors with Memory Loss
- Depression in Seniors
- Staying Socially Active Leads to Successful Aging
- Staying Sharp
- Warning Signs that Mom Might Need Extra Help
- Hearing Loss: The Basics
- Your Prescription for Medication Safety
- Preventing Caregiver Burnout Before It Starts
- The Aphasia Challenge
- Staying Hydrated and Healthy This Summer
- Get in the Act!
- Speaking to Your Loved One about Living Assistance
- Long Distance Caregiving
- Nutrition as We Age
- Steps for a Safe Discharge
- Take Heart
- Low Vision
- Bath Safety
Serving Minneapolis, St Louis Park, Golden Valley, Richfield and the West Metro
Visiting Angels ST LOUIS PARK, MN5000 W 36th St #130
St Louis Park, MN 55416