Looking after elderly relatives in your own home is something more of us will be doing as we have an ageing population. As many families struggle with financial pressures, often it makes sense to pool resources and live in a multi-generation household. Whether due to frailty, loneliness or bereavement, many older people would love to live with their loved ones. My advice would be to think about the emotional and practical implications before making life-changing decisions. Honest communication is key along with practical stuff such as deciding if you need to install a stairlift in your home and working out which welfare benefits may be available to your family.

Looking After

Role reversal

There are certain times when it really hits us that we are actually adults. When your parents need you to care for them, you start to realise that you will be doing some of the very things they did for you when you were growing up. Tasks might range from offering a listening ear to more intensive care such as helping with dressing, toileting and personal hygiene. You may have to accompany your parent to medical appointments and ensure they take their medication at the right time.

Juggling it all

The very time when your parent needs to live with you often comes whilst you are bringing up your children and also trying to make a living. It can be a very stressful time and it is vital you recognise yourself as a carer and seek support. You may feel isolated but there are lots of people out there who can help from your local authority to a wide range of charities. It is a sign of strength to say that you need help and to seek it. Only by looking after yourself well can you care effectively for those around you so never think it is selfish to say you need support too.

My experience

When my mother died, I knew I wanted my father to come to live with me. He was adamant that whilst he liked the idea he would need his own personal space. It took me a year to find the perfect accommodation with an annexe attached to the house. We had some amazing years of memories together before he passed away. He had such quality time with his grandchildren treating them, reading to them and laughing with them. In turn, they learned so much from him and treasure their memories of him. I supported Dad as his needs became greater and he was lovely to have around for me too. We had fun trips out together with a regular Tuesday lunch date and also fish and chips on Fridays. He shared stories that he had not told me when my mum was alive. It was a very precious time for all of us.

Things that can help

You can meet other carers in person or online. You can ask your local authority for the assessment of your elderly relative’s care needs and also your support needs. You may be able to claim welfare benefits or to apply for grants. Depending on the individual, your relative may need special equipment which might be anything from mobility aids through to a specially adapted vehicle. Ensure you look into things like Meals on Wheels and laundry collection services that just might make life a little simpler for you all.

I would recommend looking after elderly relatives in your own home wholeheartedly so long as you have the right support in place. Of course, individual circumstances differ but with a little goodwill and imagination, it is possible to live together and thrive in a multi-generation household.

 

Looking After Elderly Relatives In Your Own Home

3 Little Buttons

Cuddle Fairy

Everyday activities, whatever they may be, include a degree of risk to personal safety. Whether you are driving to work or crossing the street, either through crime or circumstance, incidents can occur in an unpredictable way. Although you can’t avoid risk, it is best to take precautions. From taking measure to ensure your safety to advice on seeking experts for when an incident does occur, below are a few ways you can stay safe and well in public spaces.

Stay aware of your surroundings and be prepared

You can go as far as preparing a safety plan in case of different kinds of emergency situations. The most common way is by making sure you can an emergency contact with you at all cost, whether this is the contact details of co-workers, friends or family members. Your emergency contact can prove extremely useful in case of accidents or natural disasters.

You also need to stay aware of any hazards which may be in the area, including the possibility of slipping or tripping, perhaps in a supermarket or a restaurant. In cases where an accident occurs, you may be entitled to compensation for your injury. You can learn more about this on the-compensation-experts.co.uk.

Another important way to stay aware of your surroundings is if you are driving and have parked your car, ensure that you check inside the car before getting in. Alternatively, park in well-lit areas. It is advised not to pick up hitchhikers, and in the event that your car gets stranded or break down during your travels, make sure you have the contact details of a car repair company or a family member close by who may be able to pick you up.

Furthermore, keep your house keys separate from your bag, so if it does get stolen, you can still get to your house and report the incident afterward.

Stick to well-lit areas

You may occasionally need to walk home or to get to your car in the dark but ensure that you keep to the inside of the sidewalk, where there are people around and where it is well-lit. Don’t take shortcuts and cut through parks or alleyways. If you’re in doubt and the walk is quite long, always trust your instincts and consider taking a taxi. If you do so, make sure to message someone your whereabouts in case of emergencies.

Trust your instincts

When you are out and about by yourself, always be aware of your surroundings. It means removing your headphones so you can hear everything. If ever in doubt, trust your instincts. If something doesn’t sit right with you, do your best to remove yourself from the situation. Sometimes our subconscious is far more aware of the situation before our thoughts come up, so if something doesn’t feel right, act on it.

It will be inevitable that work and school can lead to returning home late into the night, but there are many ways you can keep yourself safe when it’s dark. By staying aware of your surroundings and trusting your instinct, ensuring that you are prepared in case of emergencies can help you feel at ease when you are out by yourself and more prepared if a situation does arise.

 

How To Stay Safe And Well In Public Spaces

Twin Mummy and Daddy

Living your life constantly worrying, stressed out and rushing from place to place all the time will soon take a toll on your health and wellbeing. What’s the solution, however, when our lives feel like one long to-do list? The trick is to focus on is implementing useful strategies that will help you better manage your stress.

 

By constantly worrying and taking on more than you can handle at once, you will not only feel tired, but you will also feel frustrated at the end of a long day. While it’s good to be busy, you also need to make sure you take care of yourself and attend to your needs. If you allow your stress to get out of control, you may regret it later when you’re not able to function to the best of your ability.

 

Increase Your Level of Physical Activity

 

Getting more daily exercise is an excellent way to reduce your stress and lift your mood. Choose to go for a walk or a short workout, and soon enough your mind will stop racing, and you’ll be able to think clearly. Working out more will not only help you stay in shape, but your mental health will also improve as well. When you make it part of your regular routine, you don’t even have to think about it and can continue to reap all the benefits that come from doing so.

 

Take Action

 

It’s important to take action and problem solve when faced with difficult life situations. For example, losing a family member is never easy but keep in mind that you have options for getting to the bottom of what happened. Do your homework and find out more about what an inquest is so you better understand your rights and how to proceed given the facts.

 

Talk through Your Problems

 

An additional healthy strategy for how to better manage your stress is to talk through your problems. Call a friend, sit down with a family member or work with a professional therapist and tell them more about what’s bothering you. Holding negative emotions inside for an extended period of time is likely going to cause you to lose control later on. You may say words or take actions in the moment that you’ll regret after you’re feeling better.

 

Practice Self-Care

 

You should put self-care activities at the top of your to-do list when you’re dealing with a lot of stress. Do more of what makes you happy and keeps you feeling great such as getting a massage, cooking nutritious meals and writing in a journal. If one fact is for certain, it’s that you’ll never regret taking better care of yourself because of how much your wellbeing will improve overall.

 

Conclusion

 

Too much stress is unhealthy and will cause you a lot of unwanted problems in the long run. Take advantage of these healthy strategies for how you can keep your worries and anxieties in check. You’ll notice that life feels like less of a chore and is more enjoyable when you do.

 

4 Top Healthy Ways To Manage Your Stress

Cuddle Fairy

Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger

It puts up with us and, quite literally, it puts us up. Our spinal column facilitates a staggering proportion of the movements we take for granted. Without it we can’t walk or even sit up straight unassisted let alone play sports, do our jobs or complete a set of deadlifts at the gym. Our spine does a whole lot to keep us happy, mobile, healthy and active, yet all too many of us take this centrepiece of our central nervous system for granted. We warp it through hours and hours of sitting, strain it with poor posture, put it through the wringer when we exercise and often fail to listen when it’s trying to tell us something. Here we’ll look at some ways in which you can mend some of your long held bad habits in order to keep your spine happy and healthy so that you can maintain your active lifestyle even when you’re at a ripe old age.

Spine

Image by PxHere

Warm up and cool down at the gym

Your warm up and cool down are an essential part of your workout regimen. Yet so often you’ll see people (mainly dudes, let’s be honest) walk right through the door and start pounding weights without any stretching or even doing a quick stint on the treadmill. Taking the time to raise your body temperature and stretch your muscles before an anabolic workout will make your muscles more pliable and ensure that they do a better job of supporting the joints take make up your spine. Here are some great warm up exercises to protect your back pre and post-workout.

Listen to your back

Back pain is often a symptom that something is awry in your spinal column or the muscles that support it. The longer you ignore it, the more likely it is that the underlying issue will be exacerbated. Moreover, this could impact on your gait and cause you to move in a way that will cause greater damage or deterioration to your spine. See a physio, chiropractor or osteopath. The sooner you seek treatment, the more likely it is that the damage will be mitigated.

Get up and get moving at work

Our bodies were not designed to spend hours and hours sitting each and every day. Yet, not only do we spend 8-12 hours sitting at our desks at work, we typically sit when driving or getting the bus or train to work and spend a significant portion of our leisure time sitting, too. This can lead to myriad health problems and warp your posture, causing digestive health problems and even increasing your risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Try to take a break from your desk every 30 minutes even if it’s just to nip to the bathroom or grab a glass of water.

Know when to replace your mattress

Finally, conventional wisdom dictates that you should change your mattress every 7-10 years. Yet, while this is a useful guide, it’s important to know the signs that your mattress needs to be replaced. If you frequently wake up in the night, wake up stiff or sore or feel that your mattress is no longer giving you proper back support, it’s gotta go!

Confessions of a New Mummy

Looking after your health when travelling is essential whether the purpose of your trip if for business or pleasure. It is never nice to be poorly but when you are overseas, everything can seem that much more daunting and scary particularly if there are language barriers to contend with. Let’s look at how you can take care of yourself and your family when travelling in Europe.

Take medication with you

If you are on medication for an ailment already, taking some with you may be essential and will certainly make things simpler for you. You might also want to pack some generic medicines such as painkillers and travel sickness pills. Check out the rules and regulations around this course of action well in advance as they will be different depending on which country you are visiting.

EHIC Card

An EHIC lets you get state healthcare in other EEA countries and Switzerland at a reduced cost or sometimes for free.

If you have one already check it is in date before you travel. If you don’t apply for one quickly and do not pay for one. You can find out more with this Guide to EHIC which you can find online.

Travel Insurance

Be aware that the EHIC should never be seen as an alternative to travel insurance. Do you really want to forego the protection that travel insurance can give to repatriate you if there was serious health incident whilst you are overseas? Travel insurance can also protect you in the event of missed flights and lost or stolen property. There are plenty of horror stories about what can happen when travel insurance is not in place.

Language skills

Ideally learn the language of the country you are visiting. This will always enhance your trip in so many ways from communicating with officials to making friends with the locals. There are good online courses available with apps like Babbel or Duolingo which can either get you going from scratch or improve you current levels of a particular language. If that seems too daunting, do consider a good phrase book. If you know the words and sentences you are likely to need, make the effort to learn those. It can speed things up which always helps when there is a mild or serous health concern.

Ask for help

Forget about the stiff upper lip and ask for assistance when you need it. Some people should help anyway such as your travel company or your accommodation provider. Do not be scared of approaching someone and asking for support. Most people are kind and only too happy to help in an emergency.

What are your tips for looking after your health when travelling in Europe?

 

 

 

 

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