I’ve been there. After a messy expensive divorce in which I made a few costly emotional decisions, the financial implosion of 2008, a layoff, and a huge rent increase all in the same year (and I thought 2020 is bad!), I hit my financial bottom. My bank account was perilously low, my credit cards had high balances, I had no job, and my expenses had increased dramatically.
In my practice, I have the privilege of helping seniors while they remain in their home. Whether organizing important papers, paying their bills or managing in-home caregiver payroll, my clients’ number one concern is staying independent. Many seniors worry about staying in their home, and have become masters of denial or deception.
To help you identify the need for senior assistance, here the first 5 (out of 10) signs to look for:
Sign #1: Hygiene. Poor grooming or unmet basic self-care needs (bathing, clean clothes). Often these are early signs that someone is in declining health.
Sign #2: Nutrition. Unexplained weight loss is a sign of poor nutrition. Look for spoiled or inadequate food hinting a senior isn’t cooking or eating well.
Sign # 3: Housework. A home that’s dirtier or more cluttered than usual; piles of laundry or dishes may suggest something is awry. Hiring a housekeeper can help, but a poorly maintained house points to physical decline or depression.
Sign #4: Health. Maybe there’s just a general sense that something isn’t quite right, such as persistent fatigue or lack of interest in general. Follow your instincts and make a doctor’s appointment. Whenever possible, attend the appointment with the senior so you can offer information or hear the diagnosis/next steps.
Sign #5: Medications. Lots of unused pills in the cupboard – or confusion about how, why or when medications should be taken – are danger signs for senior assistance. Managing meds can take some initial set up (such as a pill box), but the need for reminders on a daily basis could mean bigger issues.
Next week I’ll post the last five warning signs alerting the need for senior assistance. Or, if you know a senior loved one needs help with paying bills, organizing important papers, and reconciling accounts, schedule a free 30-minute consultation. Email me at Alison@fiscallyfit.us or call (650) 965-4090 for a no-cost, no-obligation appointment.