How to Know When a Senior is Not Fit Enough to Live Alone

How to Know When a Senior is Not Fit Enough to Live Alone

Age catches up with us, but sometimes, age has very little to do with a senior’s need for home care. How will you know when someone in your family or an elder close to you cannot be left alone? There are signs to look for, and we are about to look at some of them.

They Are in the Recovery Stage

If he/she has suffered from an accident or illness, and recovery is still ongoing, they are most certainly not fit enough to be left on their own without supervision. Just because the elder is no longer in the hospital does not mean that he/she is just as fit as they used to be, at least not the right way. The need for temporary supervision is pretty much the same for everyone, but age does play a role here. Recovery takes longer when you are older, especially if you have other health conditions that most elders are susceptible to. Then there is the psychological vulnerability of elders to consider as well.

If someone in the family can stay with them and take care of their needs during this time, that’s great, but it may not be the most practical solution in all cases. It’s quite possible that they will need the help of trained caregivers with preliminary medical knowledge at that time. Even if that’s not an issue, can they do it all day, every day, for a long period? Chances are low that they could do so without sacrificing their daily lives. Don’t worry, though, because if you are in St Louis, Missouri, you should be able to find 12-hour or 24-hour home care assistance at a reputable St. Louis home care center.

They Are Showing Signs of Dementia

Dementia is often mistaken to be synonymous with Alzheimer’s, but that’s not quite right. A majority of elders who show the symptoms of dementia may indeed suffer from Alzheimer’s, but several other conditions can also lead to dementia. Whatever the cause for their dementia might be, though, symptoms remain mostly the same. If they are suffering from a neurological disease, they should show signs of dementia, such as:

  • Excessive and rapidly worsening forgetfulness and repetitive behavior.
  • Depression and bipolar mood swings.
  • Impaired communication and motor skills.
  • Impaired complex brain functions are needed for solving mathematical and logical problems.
  • Spatial disorientation, getting lost in known neighborhoods and even in one’s own home.
  • Loss of interest in hobbies, socializing, and entertaining activities.
  • Difficulty with performing daily tasks that may include anything from signing checks to using utensils while eating.

They Seem Uncharacteristically Unhygienic

If their home looks messy, unclean, and unhygienic, it should not be immediately perceived as a sign of dementia. However, it should be taken as a sign that they need home care assistance to live properly now. Uncleaned, piled up dishes, piling garbage, clutter, etc., can also signify debilitating pain, often from osteoarthritis or osteoporosis.

Asking the elder about their situation is often enough to know whether they need help. See if they realize how unhygienic their home has become and whether they seem embarrassed about it. If so, then the issue is likely physical.