Are you caring for someone from far away? Check out these tips to make your job a little easier:
- Learn What You Need to Know as a Long-Distance Caregiver
Learn as much as you can about your family member or friend's illness, medicines, and resources that might be available. This can help you understand what is going on, anticipate the course of an illness, prevent crises, and assist in healthcare management.
- Plan Your Visits with an Aging Parent or Relative
Set realistic goals for visits. Talk to your family member or friend ahead of a visit and find out what they would like to do while you are there.
- Activities to Do When Visiting an Aging Parent or Relative
Try to make time to do things unrelated to being a caregiver. Finding time to do something simple and relaxing can help everyone and it builds more family memories.
- Get in Touch, and Stay in Touch
Many families schedule conference calls with doctors, the assisted living facility team, or nursing home staff so several relatives can participate in one conversation and get up-to-date information about a relative's health and progress.
- Help an Aging Parent Stay in Contact from Afar
Whether it’s installing a private land line in a nursing home room or getting them a cell phone, staying connected with your aging parent can give everyone some peace of mind.
- Organize Paperwork
Organizing paperwork is one way that a long-distance caregiver can be a big help. Focus on gathering the essentials first and fill in the blanks as you go along. Visit our website for a list of documents and other information to gather.
- Get Caregiving Training
Whether you are the primary caregiver or a long-distance caregiver, getting some caregiving training can be helpful. For example, training can teach you how to safely move someone from a bed to a chair, how to help someone bathe, and basic first aid. Information about training opportunities is available online.
- Gather a List of Resources in your Aging Relative's Neighborhood
Searching the Internet is a good way to start collecting resources. Check with a local library or senior center, Area Agency on Aging, or Eldercare Locator to find out about sources of help.