Home for the Holidays: What to Look for When Visiting Aging Relatives

The holidays are fast approaching, and soon families will be heading everywhere from across town to across the country to spend quality time with aging loved ones, be it for holiday celebrations or winter vacations.

During this important in-person family time, we at SameAddress are encouraging those visiting with aging loved ones to be on the lookout for any red flags to their well-being.

Here are 10 easily observable, though oftentimes overlooked, clues – physical, social, emotional and cognitive – that may indicate an older adult is in need of some additional assistance, now or in the near future.
During your holiday visit with an older adult you love, here are things to be sure to look for:

1. Notable changes in person’s weight, appearance, odor or other personal grooming habits

2. Abundance of expired/spoiled foods in the refrigerator and/or numerous duplicate food items in the pantry or freezer

3. Dead or dying plants and/or unkempt pets

4. Nicks, dents, dings and scratches on the car

5. Piles of unopened mail and/or unclaimed newspaper deliveries

6. Excessive overdue bill notices in the mail

7. Neglected lawn care and/or exterior home maintenance

8. Cluttered, dirty living spaces

9. Excessive sleeping, disinterest in activities or withdrawing from social interactions

10. Any types of noticeable changes in mood or behavior

Should you observe any number of the items on this checklist, it may be a good time to consider a professional assessment of your loved one’s well-being and ability to remain independent as they age (such as those conducted by the team at SameAddress). Family members can then work with professionals to establish a personal care plan, allowing aging seniors to remain safe, independent and comfortable in their own homes.

From everyone at the SameAddress family, may your time with family this holiday season be filled with joy, and the promise of a safe and healthy year ahead for all.

Questions or concerns after visiting aging love ones during the holidays? Don’t hesitate to speak with a representative at SameAddress. We’re more than happy to answer your questions, talk through the signs you notice and figure out a plan should additional care be needed. Feel free to give us a call today at 1-866-SENIOR-1.