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Tasks Long-Distance Caregivers Can Take Care Of
Even without the rapid evolution of technology, helping seniors from afar has always been possible.
One consideration that all caregivers should make is whether or not a senior living facility is the best place for an elder to live, as well as whether it’s a realistic option based on budget. These facilities typically offer daily medical care, socialization with other residents, and peace of mind to relatives who know that their parent is being looked after by a professional staff. These facilities are evolving as technology does, with Health Sense documenting the rise of the ‘Airbnb of Senior Living.’
Regardless of where a senior lives, long-distance caregivers can handle many tasks that will remove stress from both the caregiver and the recipient upon completion. Agingcare.com recommends several steps long-distance caregivers can take, including educating themselves on the nature of any ailments their parents may have. Being familiar with their prescriptions, and checking with in-person caregivers to ensure that the senior is taking them as prescribed, is another way that care can be administered from afar.
The Mayo Clinic highlights other ways that remote caregivers can help out. Coordinating caretaking services, appointments, and other necessary tasks that a senior may require can be completed from a distance. Remaining in touch with other family members so that all parties are informed and contributing to their parents’ care is vital.
Remote caregiver guilt is very real, but it is most often not justified. As long as we do what we can to help as much as possible with the care of a loved one, guilt should not come into the equation. Plus, with the rise of technology, it is easier than ever to have face-to-face contact that helps ensure a loved one that despite the distance, we care deeply about their health and wellbeing.
Tech and Long-Distance Caregiving
Believe it or not, technology has greater value than allowing us to take pictures of our meals. Shocking, right?
Home Care Assistance lists four technologies that have made it easier to administer care from afar. These services allow a loved one to check in on them remotely, and even to help manage their finances, as seniors tend to be prime targets for scammers and thieves.
The NCBI estimates that nearly $7 billion in productivity is lost annually when family members are required to provide in-person care for a relative. They also note how the rise in caregiving-related technologies have helped reduce this great cost.
Skype and Facetime are great for staying in touch, but technologies are evolving with the specific intent of providing convenience and assistance to remote caregivers. This is great news for all parties involved, as it not only helps make long-distance caregivers more effective, it helps to alleviate the guilt that distance may unjustifiably induce in adult children of aging parents.
Witnessing our parents and loved ones age is difficult enough. Being unable to live near them as they get older makes this reality even worse. But, with the evolution of technologies related to long-distance caregiving, administering long-distance care and support is more practical than ever. So long as we take advantage of these technologies, we can alleviate guilt that arises from distance between ourselves and our aging parents.