How to Prepare to Care for Aging Parents
As we get older, so many of us make the transition from being cared for by our parents to becoming the caregivers. As our parents age, we take on more and more responsibility for their medical care and general wellbeing. If you’re reaching that point now, here are some tips from our assisted living community in Camden County, NJ, on how to get ready for this new life stage:
- Communicate early on. Talking about elder care doesn’t need to be a serious and lengthy conversation from the start, and you don’t need to take on everything yourself. Instead, chat with parents early on about what they envision for themselves and what you can do to help them achieve their plan. This gives you an idea of what they expect without placing all the pressure on your shoulders in an instant.
- Gather information. When care decisions aren’t urgent, it’s the perfect time to make sure that all the necessary information you’d need to make care decisions is organized and at hand. This means gathering insurance and finance information, making copies of parents’ insurance policies, benefits, Medicare coverage, and retirement accounts, as well as contact information for their doctors.
- Legal preparation. It’s important for your parents to have legal documentation in place to determine their care and wishes, and that you are aware of what these documents contain. Some important documents include an up-to-date Last Will and Testament, Living Wills (these determine end-of-life and healthcare wishes), and durable power of attorney documents that determine medical and financial decisions in the event of incapacity.
- Financial planning. Elder care costs can be significant, so it’s important to know where your parents stand financially and what you can do to help minimize the impact of these costs. This includes developing a financial plan to pay for healthcare, housing or caregiving, as well as Medicare planning.
- Research your options. Thinking about caring for your elderly parents can be overwhelming — after all, most people have little personal experience in this area. Research is key in not only understanding the costs and planning involved in caregiving, but also in understanding and discovering the care options available.
Affordable independent style living for seniors at our assisted living community in Camden County, NJ
Collingswood is part of the United Methodist Communities’ network of high-quality, non-profit assisted living communities specializing in independent style living for seniors. With an experienced care and assistance team, scalable services customized to each resident’s needs, and a lively social calendar, we focus on providing essential resources that promote independence and quality of life.
To find out more about United Methodist Communities or our assisted living services, please visit our website and contact us at https://collingswood.umcommunities.org to book your visit today.