If you’ve ever watched a parent age before your eyes, you know that it’s a terrible experience. Your grief overwhelms you, and you feel powerless. You want to help your parent, but you fear you have few options. You think a vacation might help, but you’re not sure it’s such a good idea. Like all concerned caregivers, you understand the importance of companionship. But, how does one include a depressed parent on family vacations?
What Vacations Mean To Each Of Us
As we age, many of us lose the ability to engage in physical activities. We find it difficult to hike, swim, or bike. Exercising becomes an ordeal. However, many of us retain our love for companionship and traveling.
In fact, socializing and exploring keeps us feeling human. These activities make us feel worthy and happy.
Many seniors deteriorate physically and emotionally when left to sit at home. They eventually require more medications and more assistance. Their health is vastly improved, however, when they are included in family activities. They are able to maintain longer periods of mobility and are less likely to suffer dementia issues.
Unique Ways To Include Seniors On Family Vacation Trips
By making some simple adjustments, we can include seniors on family vacations.
If your loved one has mobility issues, call ahead to make sure that the hotel provides wheelchair-accessible accommodations. This can include anything from wheelchair ramps to wheelchair-accessible bathrooms.
Seniors also need to adhere to medication schedules on vacation. So, make sure that all medications are up-to-date and clearly labeled with the proper dosages and times.
Above all, make sure that your vacation schedule is flexible. Mom may enjoy vacationing with the family, but she may also appreciate a few quiet nights in her room. While she enjoys some downtime, everyone else can check out the latest hot-spots. A little flexibility can go a long way towards ensuring a stress-free vacation for everyone.
Last, but not least, you may also consider bringing a professional caregiver with you. A healthcare professional can be invaluable during vacations. He/she can assist with your loved one’s hygiene needs or provide assistance out of vehicles/wheelchairs. Additionally, an agency caregiver usually has First Aid/CPR certification. If your loved one is prone to falls or accidents, a professional caregiver can give you peace of mind when you travel.
At David York, we are all about compassionate care for seniors and families. For more information on quality senior services, contact us. We are happy to answer all of your questions. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn.