2 MIN READ

Are you living miles away from your parents?
Now that they are getting older, you are worried about being so far away.
What if something happens and they need help?
What if there is an emergency and they need help?
What can be done in such cases?

Taking care of loved ones living in the same house can often be challenging, time-consuming, and complicated. And when you live far away, the complications get multiplied.

If you have to care for your parents from a long distance, the following tips can certainly be useful:

1. Maintain regular communication

Communication is one of the most important aspects here.  It is advisable to stay in touch with your parents, their friends and neighbours. In the present digital era, a video chat or communication through social media channels can help.

2. Get organized by gathering relevant information

Outline the main responsibilities involved in your parents care. Develop a system to keep things well organized like regular doctor’s appointments, bills, and account information. Also make sure you have the contact information of physicians, pharmacists, and neighbours in case they are unexpectedly needed.

3. Spend quality time during visits

Spending some time with your loved ones allows you to express your feelings about them. These relaxing moments let you cherish your wonderful memories.

4. Discuss legal and financial issues

Although discussing legal and financial issues can sometimes be difficult, it helps to ensure that your loved ones can make decisions even when incapacitated. More often than not, you may need access to your parent’s financial and legal records. In such cases, organizing all the related information in a filing system can help you respond more quickly if there is a crisis.

5. Stay in touch, even from a distance

Access to medical care for your loved ones has become easier than ever owing to advancements in technology. For that, you can set-up a medical alert system or speed-dial on their mobile. It can be done with emergency numbers or through certain apps such as:

  • Aegis
  • Care24
  • Zoctr

Caring for your loved ones located far away is challenging, yet important.  Separation from one’s parents owing to professional commitments can be really difficult, especially when they need urgent medical help. The tips mentioned above can help you take care of your loved ones and keep you informed about their well-being.

References:

  • Cagle JG and Munn JC (2012). Long Distance Caregiving: A Systematic Review of the Literature J Gerontol Soc Work. 2; 55(8): 682–707
  • Baldock CV (2000). Migrants and their parents: Caregiving from a distance. Journal of Family Issues. ;21(2):205–224
  • Benefield LE (2005). Ways to support long-distance family caregivers. Home Health Nurse.;23(3):196
  • Irfan B, Irfan O, Ansari A and Nan K (2017). Impact of caregiving on various aspects of the lives of caregivers. Cureus. 9(5): e1213
  • Austrom MG and Lu Y (2009). Long-Term Caregiving: Helping Families of Persons with Mild Cognitive Impairment Cope. Curr Alzheimer Res. 6(4): 392–398

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