Caregiving during a disaster

Bryan Aldrige

August 30, 2011

Hurricane Irene may have been a bit overblown by the media, but that doesn't mean that it didn't affect millions of homeowners who struggled with flooding, power outages and fallen trees. Natural disasters are always unpredictable, but that makes the right kind of planning all the more important.

Family caregivers who are ordinarily worried about seniors living on their own may be even more concerned if a loved one lives in a disaster-prone area. Consequently, it's important to help older adults get the kind of preparations they need, especially during hurricane season.

Those who live far away from a parent should make sure to talk to the neighbors about watching after the senior in the event of an emergency. This can give caregivers someone else to call during a disaster.

Make sure that a parent knows to stock up on supplies like food and water, particularly if the event is expected to last for days, according to

Looking into additional safety measures can be a wise move, too. Devices like personal emergency response systems can be installed in a senior's home so that residents can immediately get in touch with medical services.