(Last Updated On: September 27, 2022)

Watching a parent or relative get older can be challenging for you both. You’ll need to navigate new ways of doing things, and the typical caregiving roles may become reversed, which can bring up challenging emotions for everyone involved. During this time of transition, an older person may want to stay in their home and maintain as much independence as possible, but this is not always the best and safest option. Read on for some warning signs to look out for that could signify it’s unsafe for your elderly loved one to live alone.

When Is It Unsafe for Your Elderly Loved One to Live Alone

They Struggle to Keep on Top of Medication

A big warning sign that things could become unsafe, is if they can’t keep on top of their medication. This could mean a few things. In more severe cases, patients with memory issues, like those with dementia, could start forgetting to take medication or taking extra medication to treat issues that may not be there. This could lead to potentially disastrous situations. So, be sure to ensure your loved one is taking their medication regularly, and check if you suddenly notice a lot of new over-the-counter medications appearing.

Alternatively, they may just struggle to keep on top of going to the pharmacy to get their prescription. In this case, there are alternative options to consider before it would be considered unsafe. For example, some pharmacies offer delivery options for elderly patients.

You Notice Changes in Their Home

It’s a good idea to keep an eye on the way they look after their home. This differs from person to person. If they’ve always been a little messy, and the house still seems messy, it’s probably not an issue. However, if they’ve spent a lifetime being tidy, and the house suddenly appears to be in decline, then this could be a warning sign that something is wrong. It’s also worthwhile keeping an eye out for items in strange places. For example, if they’re keeping glasses in the fridge, then this could be caused by an underlying cognitive issue, which could lead to them being unsafe in their home.

They Get Lost

This one is quite worrying. While it’s normal as people get older that their memory might not be what it once was, if you’re loved one is getting lost and disoriented going to familiar places, like the bank, the grocery store, or even back to their home, it might be time to consider assisted living Livingston NJ. There, they can enjoy the comfort that comes with 24-hour assistance, as well as a vibrant community in a stunning location.

You Notice a Decline in Hygiene

Another red flag to watch out for is if their hygiene starts to decline. There are two reasons this could be happening. If they have a cognitive issue, they may simply be forgetting to have a shower or brush their teeth. Alternatively, if mobility has become an issue, doing these simple tasks may have become too much of a chore. In either case, it’s a strong sign that assisted living could improve their quality of life.

A senior academic researcher, reviewer, and editor, Dr. Declan Pouros is also an internationally accredited psychotherapist. He earned his PhD in Psychological Counseling and Guidance, and in the years since, he has taught in the Department of Psychological Counseling and Guidance himself. He has also authored papers that have gone on to appear in such world-renowned journals as the European Journal of Psychological Assessment, Psychological Reports, the Scandinavian Journal of Psychology. Asia Pacific Psychiatry, and Computers in Human Behaviour.

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