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Monday, 30 January 2017 04:00

Dealing with resistance to care

As elderly loved ones age the need for home care often arises, and more often than not the very concept of needing care is met with resistance from the elderly person. They might feel that they are still firmly able to care for themselves and are therefore opposed to the idea from the outset.

We take a look at reasons why the elderly may be in conflict with receiving home assistance and ways in which we can encourage them to consent to home care without seeming insensitive.

Reasons for resistance

Your elderly loved one might be feeling a strong sense of loss: loss of independence or loss of mental or physical ability. By assenting to home care they are essentially admitting that they are no longer in control of their daily life and for those who are stubborn, this is considered a sign of weakness.

The elderly suffering from illnesses that affect their memory, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia, might also be faced with confusion as they don’t understand why a stranger is constantly there to watch over them.

Approaching the elderly about the need for care

  • Be sensitive to the time you choose to bring up a discussion around home care – wait until everyone is relaxed and in a good mood as this will help to ease a possibly contentious discussion.
  • Determine the scope of care that is required in conjunction with your elderly loved one; if they are capable make them a part of the decision that will determine their future going forward.
  • Give your loved one time to get used to the idea; they might not like it initially, but perhaps the next time you broach the subject they’ll have had a change of heart.

Remember to always be patient and thoughtful towards the elderly when making decisions that will ultimately affect them the most. Listen to their needs and concerns and try your utmost to take their feelings into account when determining their road ahead.

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  • PO Box 31317
    Tokai, Cape Town 7966
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