Possessions can sometimes keep a senior trapped in place
October 6, 2010
When it may become necessary for seniors to move out of their house to an assisted living facility or to their child's home, they may suddenly have difficulty leaving. The New York Times suggests that this may be due to the accumulation of physical objects, and memories, around the home.
If this is the case, it may be necessary for family members to help move the items for the senior. Many may hold emotional significance, so it's also important to take the right approach.
Dr David J. Ekerdt claims that there are two ways that make it easier for older adults to move to a new residence. A caregiver can help a senior move by either assisting or asserting during the cleaning process.
Assisting means following the resident's instructions and asking them whether an item should be disposed or not, turning the activity into a team effort. However, this may not always be possible, particularly if a senior isn't cognitively or emotionally capable of the task.
In this case, it may be necessary for caregivers to assert themselves during the process and take the initiative to throw things away that may be dangerous or unnecessary.
One way to ensure that a senior can live in their own home and age in place for as long as possible is to install an elderly alert system in a residence. These devices allow older adults to contact caregivers or physicians in the case of an emergency.