Brickmont Assisted Living Blog

How to Care for Older Parents as an Only Child

Posted by The Brickmont Assisted Living Team on Feb 1, 2023 8:00:00 AM | 5 minute read


Caregiving is a rewarding experience, especially when it comes to ensuring that your parents are taken care of. However, it can also come with challenges. Stress, lack of self-care, and other obstacles can contribute to emotional and mental health issues.

As an only child, caring for aging parents can be especially hard. You don’t have siblings to rely on for extra help, and you might find yourself serving as the sole caregiver. Part of Brickmont Assisted Living’s mission is to provide resources regarding senior caregiving so that families know where to begin when providing the right care for their loved ones. 

If you are an only child, our assisted living team in Georgia is sharing senior care tips to help you create a strong care system to support you and your parents.

Start Planning Early

When you were growing up, your parents protected you from sad or uneasy topics; they kept you safe and protected you from discomfort. However, if your parents are continuing to protect you from the realities of their aging journey, it can become a problem. Not only does it deflect the fact they need extra assistance, but it can also  prevent you from having an open conversation regarding care options.  

Start the conversation early to ensure you and your parents are on the same page. Take the time to research care options, whether in-home care or an assisted living community, and include your parents’ wishes and opinions during this process. Ask them to describe their ideal lifestyle, and find senior care options that meet their goals and needs.

Use These Talking Points

When discussing senior care options with your parents, here are three key points to bring to the table.

Living Arrangements

When it comes to senior care options, the goal is to find one that improves your parents’ quality of life while promoting health and safety. Some older adults are able to live at home with the help of in-home care services. However, an assisted living community is a stronger option for those needing more consistent support, as care is available 24 hours a day.

Medical Wishes

If one of your parents has a health issue, it’s important to discuss their treatment wishes and ensure they are documented. In case your parent is unable to communicate for themselves in the future, this confirms that their wishes will be carried out properly. 

Power of Attorney

Make sure your parents have their affairs in order, whether they have financial documents, a will, or a health care proxy. As an only child, it’s crucial that your parents update and finalize these documents so that you are not left with any loose ends in the future. 

Practice Self-Care

If you become your parent’s primary caregiver, you must take breaks. Caregiving can often feel like a 24/7 job, and even the smallest moments you take for yourself can lead to feelings of guilt, especially as an only child. 

However, self-care is the number one cure for caregiver stress, which is incredibly common as you navigate your parents’ aging journey. Too much stress can have adverse efforts on your health. For example, you might experience feelings of depression and anxiety or have issues getting the proper amount of sleep, nutrition, and physical activity. 

If it’s challenging for you to step away for even a moment from your role as a caregiver, consider respite care services. Respite care ensures your parents are cared for by trained professionals while you have time to recharge. At Brickmont, our respite care and adult day care services in Georgia can provide your parents with enriching activities and exceptional care. At the same time, you are able to step away and take care of your personal needs. 

Consider Assisted Living

Sometimes, caregiving by yourself is not enough. For example, one of your parents might reach a point where they require professional care, and you might not be qualified to fit that role. 

Assisted living communities provide support with daily tasks, medication management, and engagement. As a result, your parents can enjoy maintenance-free living, exciting social events and activities, transportation, and enriching programs that will enhance their quality of life. 

Brickmont’s assisted living communities in Georgia provide outstanding support, care, and compassion. Our services are designed to meet every unique need; from minimal support to 24/7 care, our mission is to make a difference. Visit our website today for more information about assisted living in Georgia.





Topics: Caregiving

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