How to Manage Your Loved One’s Care While Socially Distant

Staying away from mom and dad is tough, but you want to prioritize their health, safety and care while the pandemic continues. Living far away from your folks can also add to the challenge of caring for them. Now might be a great time to consider in-home care or assisted living options nearby to ensure their care is properly managed at all times.

Here are some tips from our assisted living team in Cape May County, NJ, to best manage your parent’s care from a distance.

#1 – Stay in touch

One of the biggest challenges during this pandemic is maintaining our mental and physical health. It’s essential that loved ones stay in touch with their senior loved ones, whatever way they can. Fortunately, with video chat options like Zoom and Skype, it’s easy to chat and see each other as often as you’d like completely risk-free.

For anyone without access to a smartphone or tablet, regular phone calls are just as good. Regular catch-ups or even a quick call once a day to check in are ideal – and they’ll help you cope with your concern for them too.

#2 – Drive by

It sounds like a funny idea, but a quick drive by when you are in the area is a great way to check on your loved one! Let them know by phone when to expect you, and drive by their home at the appointed time.

Stay physically distant, wave, blow kisses and tell them you love them. Sanitize any care packages thoroughly, and place them by the door for pick up while your loved one is inside. People have gotten so creative with this option, organizing funny parades with music and noisemakers, having socially-distant drive-by birthday parties, and just having a great time!

#3 – Create a network

It takes a village to look after senior loved ones, and the pandemic has really highlighted this! Don’t try to take it all on alone, especially if you live far away from your parents. Have a Zoom or Skype chat with other family members (especially those nearby), get to know your parent’s neighbors and even get some professional help if needed.

Having an organized network to share the load is beneficial to everyone, especially your parents. Neighbors can keep an eye on the house and let you know if they have any concerns, family members can take different days of the week to call your parents or deliver groceries/medications, and together you can make caregiving a lot easier and more effective.

#4 – Have a plan

No one wants to face an emergency, but it’s important for their wellbeing and your peace of mind that everyone knows what to do if one does. Whether it’s a fall, a possible COVID-19 exposure or anything else, you and your parents need to have a set plan in place to cope with it.

This should include contact numbers for doctors or healthcare professionals, knowledge of the symptoms of COVID-19 (especially important ones like shortness of breath or chest pain), and having an emergency healthcare kit at home complete with other important contact numbers, health information, insurance details and an updated list of medications. This will ensure that health care emergencies are taken care of as quickly and effectively as possible, and that the right people are contacted to keep you informed.

#5 – Consider assisted living

Going into assisted living is a big step for families and it is often a difficult decision to make, especially during an on-going pandemic. However, these communities are often very different from what everyone imagines! United Methodist Communities at The Shores is a safe community that supports senior health and independence in true comfort. 

Our team responded quickly to COVID-19 with industry-leading health and safety protocols for residents, associates, vendors, and visitors to follow. We also understand that responding to this virus is much more than just enhanced health and safety measures. It’s also important to keep our residents engaged and connected to the outside world through means of socially distant activities and video streaming services.

At The Shores, our aim is to create a community where quality of life for seniors comes first – really, we’re working to create a home. Contact us today to find out more about our senior care services, or visit our website at: https://theshores.umcommunities.org/services/