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Caregiver Tips: Caring for a Loved One with Arthritis

Arthritis can lead to varying degrees of pain in joints that affect movements in the knees, hips, feet and fingers. The condition also presents new challenges for seniors trying to remain as mobile as possible. Fortunately, the following tips from trusted Annapolis home care agency, Home Care Assistance, can help family caregivers ensure that their loved one with arthritis maintains a positive outlook and as much independence as safely possible.

Positive Encouragement

A good place to start for caregivers is to become as educated as possible on the type of arthritis affecting their senior loved one. This helps caregivers know what to expect and what symptoms to watch out for as the condition progresses. It’s important to let seniors know that arthritis doesn’t mean the end of a productive life. With proper support and a few precautions, most seniors with arthritis can still remain vital and active. Caregivers can also provide positive encouragement by:

  • Encouraging light-to-moderate exercise or physical therapy
  • Suggesting dietary adjustments likely to promote joint and muscle strength
  • Attending doctors’ appointments (to encourage questions and meaningful discussions)

If you are unable to provide the level of support and encouragement that you believe your loved one needs, hiring a professional caregiver can help to ensure companionship, assistance and highly quality care 24/7. Click here to learn more about part-time home caregivers in Annapolis.

Astute Observation

Caregivers can act as an objective pair of eyes by identifying and reporting noticeable changes like increased instability while walking or difficulty getting up from a sitting position to their loved one’s primary care physician. Oftentimes, different medications – or adjustments to existing medications – can minimize new symptoms.

Proactive Intervention

For seniors with arthritis, stiff or painful joints can result in trouble with balance and coordination, often making otherwise minor stumbles more serious in nature. Caregivers can help reduce this risk by considering the following proactive steps:

  • Keeping things well-lit (including the use of easily accessible switches)
  • Installing handrails in the bathroom (around the tub/shower and toilet)
  • Giving their loved one a medical alert device (to provide emergency assistance in the event of a fall)
  • Placing commonly used items within easy reach (to prevent falls from a loss of balance while reaching)

If you have an aging parent or loved one who is living with arthritis and you feel you are unequipped to assist them with daily activities, request information about comprehensive home care from Home Care Assistance of Annapolis. Our Care Managers would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have and can schedule a complimentary, in-home consultation where we can learn more about your loved one, his or her current abilities and the home environment to determine the best care schedule. To request your consultation, call 443-302-2771 – we’re here to help 24/7.