Senior safety is always a top priority at Homewatch CareGivers®, but in this time of social distancing, safety at home is even more critical. Our franchise owners and their caregivers provide services that keep seniors safe at home as a regular part of doing business. For anyone sheltering in place with a loved one, you can refresh your knowledge with these senior safety tips.
Medication Management Reminders
Many seniors require one or more prescription medications to manage or treat chronic conditions. Even for those whose minds are sharp, managing medications can be a challenge.
Here are some suggestions for avoiding skipped doses, double doses, or negative interactions:
- Use a pill dispenser and prepare pills for the day, month, and/or week
- Keep a detailed list of all prescription and over-the-counter medications, dosages, and timing
- Designate a specific spot to store medications
- Keep a log of changes to medication or dosage, along with observations of the senior’s mood or behavior
Whether helping a senior take their required dose or organizing and preparing medications for the future, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling any medication.
Food and Cooking Safety
When caring for a senior, caregivers often assist with grocery shopping, meal planning, and preparing healthy meals. Simple safety tips can go a long way toward preventing food-borne illness, especially if the senior will be on their own for some or all meals. The first, and often most important, safety guideline is to wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.
Other ways you can help ensure the safest meals and food preparation for seniors:
- Facilitate grocery shopping. With social distancing in place, you might opt to shop in their place or make sure they are aware of any special senior shopping hours.
- Clean out the refrigerator periodically. Check expiration dates on perishable food and dispose of anything past its prime.
- Make mealtime more convenient. Label food items with easy-to-read expiration dates or stickers. Create a weekly menu and ensure all ingredients are handy. Rearrange kitchen utensils and dishware for easy access.
- Ensure healthy meals are available. Coordinate with meal delivery services or assist with chopping and other preparation for the week.
Mental Wellness and Mood
Seniors may feel the effects of isolation now more than ever, as socializing is restricted for health and safety purposes. In-home caregiver services can do a lot to combat feelings of loneliness and boredom. For those without professional caregiving services, however, family members can keep seniors engaged with daily activities like personal grooming and cooking, as well as encouraging them to make decisions about ordering medication or food for home delivery. Family members can also help seniors connect virtually to friends and family.
Special Considerations for Special Circumstances
While social distancing is in place to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), cleanliness becomes even more important than ever, especially for those with weaker immune systems, such as those over 65 years of age. High-touch surfaces within the home should be wiped down and disinfected more often than usual, including countertops, doorknobs, and light switches. Seniors, caregivers, and everyone else should wash their hands frequently and consistently, especially before and after leaving the home.
If you are interested in owning your own in-home care business to provide seniors with these essential services, get in touch with Homewatch CareGivers® today. Call (844) 220-0887 to learn more.
You can read our COVID-19 Statement here to learn more about additional safety protocols we have put in place.