Discover how you can help elderly family members without going broke! Open more than your wallet — open your heart!
The things you have to spend your money on will always change throughout your life. As a child and teenager, you can spend money on whatever you like, but this will soon change as you become an adult. Most people plan nice and early for things like buying a house, retiring, and saving for their children’s future, but very few will think of their older relatives when they are going through this process. You older family members will almost certainly need support as they age, and providing this to them can be very expensive, especially if you’re not taking the right kind of action.
Personal Care & Support
Personal care covers a lot of different things, from keeping someone clean to giving them the medication and treatments they need to live. Providing this sort of support will involve a lot of spending, as you will have to buy personal protective equipment, all of the medication your loved one needs, and may need to adapt their home to make sure that your job is as easy as possible.
Thankfully, most governments have services in place which can help with this, and even the poorest of people are able to access them without having to pay a fortune. It’s worth talking to your local care coordinator to make sure that you can access this sort of support for your loved ones. Of course, they may have to pay for this, but this will usually come out of their home, rather than the money in their bank account.
Medicines, PPE, and a range of other items have to be bought for those reaching the later stages of their life. Even if they don’t have any medical conditions, it’s likely that your loved ones will need special creams and other treatments to make sure that they are comfortable. If you live somewhere without a support network in place for resources like this, you can end up spending a small fortune on them.
Health technology is a great example of this. Hospital beds, hearing aids, and wet-rooms can all be essential to providing proper care, though they also cost far more than a lot of people can afford, and this is a shame. Buying hearing aids or the other devices you need second hand can be a good way to solve this problem. While it may not be as nice as getting something brand new, this will be far cheaper than many of the new options available to you on the market.
Entertainment & Communication
There are few things worse than the idea of spending your days sitting in the same chair, doing nothing but reading books or listening to the radio. Many people find themselves in this position in later life, and this is a very common cause for depression and loneliness amongst the elderly. Some people are able to make their own entertainment, though others might need a little bit of help with this.
Many of today’s best forms of entertainment are based online. For someone who struggles to use a computer, this can present some challenges, but you can often overcome this issue with smart technology. Google Home devices, for example, can use voice commands to play television shows and music. This means that your loved one only has to learn to say “Okay Google” before they make a request, and they will be able to handle all of their entertainment for themselves. This will work with an array of different services, from Netflix to Amazon Prime Video.
Alongside keeping themselves entertained, many older people find it tricky to stay social once they are stuck at home. This can make days feel extremely long, but the solution is simple; you just need to talk to them more. This can be in the form of phone calls, letters, and frequent visits, and it’s worth working hard to ensure that you’re seeing your loved ones as much as you can. While it may feel like you have all of the time in the world for this, the years can go by very quickly, and it’s a big shame when people miss out on memories as a result of this. You can do this without spending any money at all.
With all of this in mind, you should be feeling ready to start giving your elderly family members the support they need without breaking the bank. This will always be a challenge, but this doesn’t mean that it isn’t worth your time, as most people want to give their elderly relatives the best life they can.