4 Signs Someone Elderly is Struggling with Daily Life

Ageing can be hard, but it’s even harder when the person getting older is close to you. Over time, relationships that have lasted a lifetime but someone facing harder challenges when ageing can end up being the one who needs help. Crossing that line is hard because it brings up a lot of feelings. It’s natural for older people to want to stay in their own homes and keep their independence, but there may come a time when safety and wellbeing require a change in living arrangements. It’s not easy to figure out when and how much help is needed, and it’s even more challenging to switch roles.

Watch out for these warnings that an elderly parent, relative or friend shouldn’t be living alone, as these will help you get started.

They Suddenly Lose Weight
If your elderly relative suddenly appears thinner than usual, it may be a clue that they have stopped eating properly. People with cognitive impairments related to age frequently lose weight because they forget to eat or because they no longer know how to prepare nutritious meals.
If this is the case, you might want to talk about moving your loved one into a caring environment so they can get the help they need.

There Are Lots Of Unopened Post
Having huge piles of post that hasn’t been opened is another clear sign that your loved one might be having issues living by themselves. Watch for unread letters from people they wouldn’t typically communicate with. Sometimes if it’s new charities or organisations this can indicate that they may have lost track of their spending, which, if unchecked, could put them in debt. Asking questions can help them understand any changes.

They Are Neglecting Personal Hygiene
Unstable personal hygiene is a serious sign that your relative shouldn’t live alone, and you’ll notice it as soon as you see them. In some cases, it’s caused by a physical issue, and in others, it’s caused by a mental problem. One of the most obvious signs that someone needs help is if they stop brushing their teeth or taking showers.

These are the most common reasons for not taking care of hygiene:

  • They can’t take a shower because it hurts them or makes them feel unsafe.
  • They forget to take care of themselves and don’t realise they need to.
  • They have clinical depression and don’t have any drive to clean themselves.

They Keep Getting Lost
Your parent should know and be able to remember common places such as the local supermarket, the bank and their place of worship. If they can’t get to these places anymore, that’s a big warning sign that there is a problem. If you can’t trust a loved one to get around their own town, it might be time to talk about moving to a care home for their safety and security.