After your mom’s heart attack, your family decided she needs to have her family helping out. Your work schedule made it easiest for you to be the one with her the majority of the time. What care is she going to need? Is it possible to do everything she needs on your own? Would hiring senior home care providers be helpful to you both?
What Are You Responsible For?
Before you do anything else, weigh your responsibilities. Do you still work? If it’s not possible to retire yet, you have to put your job and income first.
When you are still working, you can still help your mom, but make sure your own needs are prioritized. It’s okay to put your mom’s care needs second and arrange for senior home care aides to help her when you don’t have the time.
Sandwich-generation caregivers also have to balance their children’s needs with their needs and their parent’s needs. If you’re in this situation, make sure you’re not ignoring your children. Schedule time for them to have you to themselves.
Ask Her Doctor About Her Medical Needs Going Forward
Your mom is probably going to be on medications for the rest of her life. She may need someone to remind her when to take her pills. If they make her feel lightheaded, arrange to have someone with her when the side effects kick in. She’ll be less anxious if she knows she’s not alone.
Will she need to work with a physical therapist or occupational therapist to learn how to take care of herself without overexerting? How about a dietitian to help her learn what she should and shouldn’t eat? It’s important to arrange those appointments if they’re recommended.
She cannot drive after a heart attack. Your mom has to get clearance from her doctor before this will happen. That means someone needs to be available to take her to appointments, drive her to stores, and ensure she has chances to socialize outside the home. It helps to have a caregiver for transportation needs.
Don’t Let Her Do Too Much
Both you and your mom’s caregiver need to keep her from overexerting. If she’s not supposed to lift heavy items, don’t let her try to carry the vacuum upstairs. Others can vacuum her bedroom and upstairs hallway.
Get a caregiver to do the housework, carry out the trash and recycling, and do the laundry. Her caregivers can change her sheets, make the bed, and do other household chores that she shouldn’t be tackling until her doctor approves it.
Arrange Senior Home Care Aides to Help Your Mom and You
You should help your mom as much as possible, but don’t lose sight of the things you need for yourself. Self-care is an important aspect of daily living, but family caregivers often put their needs last. Talk to a senior home care specialist about using respite care services to ensure you have time for yourself.
While you’re away for a walk, time with friends or family, or going on vacation, a senior home care aide can help your mom complete her daily routine. Arrange respite care services and start taking care of yourself, too.