DALLAS (KDAF) — Many people will be home for the holidays for the first time in years, and while this may be a welcome return for some, others may get a wake-up call to ailing family members.
Some signs of aging are more present than others, so, it is important to know what to look for when caring for your family members.
Lori Williams, owner of Lori Williams Senior Services, joined our show and offered advice on things to look out for when you’re home for the holidays:
Physical appearance/emotional well-being
If you come home and notice your older family members have dramatically lost or gained weight, that could be a sign that they aren’t taking good care of themselves. Look for signs of poor hygiene when you are present with your family, as that can also show how well they are taking care of themselves.
Do you notice any unusual bruising or scratches? Are they off balance? Do they shuffle their feet? Make mental notes about their hearing or vision as well.
Take notice if their home is cluttered and messy, especially if this is not how their usual behavior. Check the fridge for any expired or spoiled food. Look under cookware for any burn spots. This could mean that they are forgetting about food that is cooking on the stove, which could be dangerous.
When appropriate, go into the garage and see if there are any new bumps or scratches on their vehicles.
Another good test is to take a ride with them and observe firsthand how their motor skills are doing. If they are running through stop signs or not obeying traffic laws, this could mean it’s time for them to stop driving.
When following these tips, make sure to do it out of love and concern, rather than control. Aging is a natural process that all of us will go through, so be gracious in your approach.