A Guide to Supporting Your Elderly Parents With Mobility Issues

A Guide to Supporting Your Elderly Parents With Mobility Issues-min

Mobility issues are no light matter. 13.7% of Americans with disabilities experience difficulties with their mobility, including when they are walking around on a level floor. This makes mobility disabilities the most common type of disability in the country.

If you have elderly parents with mobility issues, you are not alone. You should not feel helpless. You can get your parents the help they deserve once you know what they should have.

How can you get accommodations for your parents? How can you clean and maintain their home? What tools and therapies do they need?

Talk to Your Elderly Parents With Mobility Issues

Before you make any big changes to your parents’ lives, you should talk with them. Forcing changes on them can make them upset and make it harder to do anything productive.

Some people may not be aware of their mobility problems until they suffer a fall or develop tremors. If you notice something is wrong with your parents, you should have a conversation with them. You can talk to their doctor or other family members about what you observe.

Give them power during the conversation. Ask them if they would like you to look into how to support elderly parents with mobility issues. Express your concern, but don’t insist that they get help if they don’t want it.

Most elderly people want to stay in their homes. You should help your parents stay in their home if they want to stay. You can ask employees at a care facility to visit your parents to make sure they are doing okay.

Change Their Home

You and your parents may need to make changes to keep the home safe. You can install grabrails in most areas, but you should install at least one in the bathroom. Your parents should use it to get in and out of the shower and keep their balance on the wet floor.

Make sure the railings near staircases are secure. You should screw them into place and repair them if they have any cracks or holes.

You can also modify the bathroom to install a level access shower. Your parent can walk directly to the shower without having to step over a bathtub or a raised rim.

If your parents’ home is not well-lit, you should install task lights. These lights illuminate particular areas, making them easy to see. You can illuminate the bathroom sink or kitchen counter.

You should remove anything in the home that your parents can trip over. This includes power cords, rugs, and vacuum cleaners. As your parents are moving through the house, you should go ahead of them and pick objects off the floor.

Get Them Mobility Tools

Mobility tools help your parents move around and maintain their balance. Walkers provide stability and encourage blood flow through the body.

Canes can help people who can maintain their balance but need to improve their posture as they walk. Your parents can get many different types of canes, including ones with hand straps.

If your parents cannot walk adequately, they can use wheelchairs. Manual wheelchairs are ones they can operate by pushing the wheels while power wheelchairs are ones they can operate with joysticks.

Have them try out a few wheelchairs before you buy one. There is no one best wheelchair that works for everyone. Some people prefer manual wheelchairs because they are lightweight and easy to store in the trunks of cars.

An adjustable bed can help your parents get out of bed in the morning. It can also help them sit up while they read in bed.

Arrange Therapy

Physical therapy can mitigate different types of mobility issues. Your parent can work with a therapist to build their muscles and bones and learn how to move without pain. If your parents have chronic pain, you can recommend massage therapy as well.

Occupational therapy can help your parents learn how to use their mobility tools. They can also learn how to carry out everyday tasks like cooking and cleaning without falling or hurting themselves.

If your parents are anxious or depressed due to their mobility issues, you can arrange for them to see a psychiatrist. They can learn about coping strategies and find ways to channel their emotions into productive outlets. They can also try meditation and mindfulness training.

Schedule Daily Exercises

Though exercise may be difficult for your parents, you should encourage them to develop an exercise routine. Lying down during the entire day can hurt their joints and impede blood flow. Even basic exercises can help them become more mobile and healthier.

You and your parents can go on a short walk around the neighborhood. Move as fast as possible, but don’t rush.

If the weather isn’t good, you and your parents can stay inside and lift some weights. You can also do stretches on soft yoga mats.

Give Your Parents a Hand

Your elderly parents with mobility issues need your support. Talk to them if they find moving around difficult. Make their home safe by creating clean walking surfaces and installing guard rails.

You should purchase mobility tools like canes and wheelchairs. Schedule therapy for your parents so they learn how to deal with pain and improve their muscular health. You should exercise with your parents several times a week.

If you don’t know where to start, look at some mobility wheelchairs. The Freedom Mobility Center provides premium mobility products. Browse our store today.