If you're going home for the holidays, and want to find out how your aging relatives are doing, there are a few places to check for warning signs. Seniors may not always be forthcoming with how they're really doing, for fear of needing to move or receive more care.
So if you're visiting them, check these places:
1. Garage: If they still drive, check out their car. Are there scratches or bumps? This may indicate it's time for them to stop driving.
2. Kitchen: What's in the fridge? A lot of expired food or leftovers? Food poisoning is dangerous for seniors. How are their eating habits? Losing weight is a sign of them not eating enough, or not making healthy choices.
3. Bedroom: Check for cleanliness. Make sure it's as clean as it normally would be, and that basic chores aren't falling to the wayside.
4. Medicine Cabinet: Are their prescriptions in order? Ask them how they keep track or organize them.
The holidays are a good time to have these conversations because it can feel less invasive, and more caring. So check for changes in their physical appearance, their home, and their overall emotional state.