It’s a difficult topic to recognize when our super-aging seniors might need a little extra support. It's not always easy to admit that our loved ones need help, but being aware of the signs can make all the difference in ensuring their safety and well-being.
Learning how to approach a vibrant loving senior is another story. See the FREE Caregiver’s Starter Guide for more information.
7 Quick Sign You Want to Watch For
But for now, let's dive in and discuss seven signs that might indicate it's time to lend a helping hand.
Forgetfulness Beyond the Usual: We all forget things from time to time, but when your senior starts forgetting important details like medication schedules, appointments, or even common everyday tasks, it could be a red flag. Keep an eye out for consistent forgetfulness that seems to be impacting their daily life. All our members keep a composition notebook nearby and start writing down date and what they see.
Changes in Personal Hygiene: Personal hygiene is often a good indicator of overall health and well-being. If you notice your senior neglecting their personal hygiene, such as skipping showers, wearing the same clothes for days, smelling bad, or neglecting dental care, it could be a sign that they're struggling to take care of themselves independently. These symptoms can be part of bigger problems. See the Senior Freedom Club for more information.
Difficulty with Mobility: As we age, it's natural for some mobility to decline to some extent. However, if you observe your senior having difficulty with basic movements like getting in and out of chairs, walking, or climbing stairs, it may be time to consider a conversation to see if there is pain or something else.
Changes in Mood or Behavior: Pay attention to any noticeable changes in your senior's mood or behavior. Are they more withdrawn, irritable, or easily confused? These changes could indicate underlying issues such as depression, anxiety, or cognitive decline, all of which may require them to see a neurologist for a thorough exam.
Unexplained Bruises or Injuries: Keep an eye out for unexplained bruises, burns, cuts, limping, or injuries, as these could be signs of falls or accidents that your senior may not be disclosing. I have lost count of the number of seniors who came into our urgent care with skin tears or cuts. When I asked them if they were going to disclose their visit to their adult children, they silently shook their heads “no”.
Decline in Nutrition or Weight Loss: Changes in eating habits or unexplained weight loss can signal underlying health issues or difficulties with meal preparation. Monitor your senior's nutritional intake and observe whether they're maintaining a balanced diet. Check out their refrigerator. See what snacks they have. Are they eating fruits and vegetables or processed crackers to fill up?
Neglecting Household Responsibilities: Is the house noticeably messier than usual? Are bills piling up, or are essential tasks like laundry and cleaning being neglected? Again, start documenting in your journal. Ask others if they are seeing these changes.
Do not be afraid to approach your senior
Recognizing these signs early on can help you take proactive steps to ensure your super aging senior gets the support they need to thrive. Remember, offering to help is not a sign of their weakness but rather a testament to your commitment to keep them healthy.
If you've noticed any of these signs in your super-aging senior, it might be time to have a compassionate conversation about their needs and preferences regarding support and assistance.
If you're ready to take the first step towards becoming a more confident and empowered caregiver, click the link below to download your Free Caregiver's Starter Guide today!