If you are currently caring for one of your elderly relatives, you need to monitor some essential items and make sure you don’t run out of them. These items will help you in your role as a caregiver. They will also be necessary for the health and well-being of your elderly relative, so they don’t feel neglected.
You can go over this list of essential items and check if you have them in stock in your elderly’s living place. If someone from Tandem Careplanning happens to be the caregiver, you may share this list with them to keep them updated.
Hygiene and Health Items
Your elderly will require some of the products of hygiene and personal care; these are described below
- Antibacterial Soap – This is one of the most essential items for your elderly, especially during this pandemic. Remember that rule #1 in this pandemic is to wash your hands properly with soap and water for 20 seconds and quite frequently. This is especially true if you were briefly touching something, such as the doorknob of the front door, that might have been touched by someone with COVID-19. To avoid passing on the virus, you need to deinfect it with soap and water.
- Clean Running Water – This is often overlooked as many don’t pay much heed whether they have access to clean tap water. However you shouldn’t take it easy especially if the plumbing system of the water supply in the house is old and may be rusty as well. You can ask the water company for assistance in this regard. These companies make sure that consumers like you and your relatives are getting clean running water at all times.
- Alcohol – You also need this for disinfecting your hands if you are not near a sink with soap and water. Generally, you need alcohol as a second line of defense, in case you touched something tainted with the virus after you had already washed with soap and water. Since you will probably be handling the medication of your loved one, alcohol will help you make sure that the medication is virus-free.
- Clean Disposable Adult Diapers – These are vital for the total hygiene of your elderly relative, especially if they experience incontinence or tend to make a mess due to their bowel movement. Make sure to bathe your elderly after removing soiled diapers. The soiled diapers have to be disposed of immediately too.
- Color Coded Garbage Bags – These are necessary even in a virus-free environment. The last thing you want is for the soiled diapers and other unhygienic objects to be mixed with your other garbage, such as those from the kitchen. Make sure you know which color of garbage bags are meant for which particular purpose. For example, the red color of garbage cans could be hazardous waste. Green color could be for organic waste from the kitchen.
- Detergent and Disinfecting Liquids – It’s good to have these on hand since these will help you make the rooms of the house part of the “clean zone”.
These items are necessary for you and the person you are taking care of to interact and communicate with other people. The communication could be with friends and family, and even with the doctor and nurse that your elderly usually consults (before the pandemic broke out).
- Laptop with Camera and Microphone – Though not everyone is able to afford these gadgets, they can help make life easier for your elderly relative. Your elderly may be able to have video calls with friends and family, as well as having a periodic checkup with their doctor and the nurse in charge of the case. It is understood that you will need internet access to be able to use this technology the right way.
- Smartphone with Stable Signal – This is a vital item to ensure proper care for your elderly at all times. There may be incidents like a fall wherein your elderly may have gotten hurt so you’ll need to call an ambulance right away. If your elderly is confined in a hospital, a smartphone will help you reach out to other relatives for support. You may also use your smartphone to take pictures in case those are needed for the care of your elderly.
- Landline Telephones – Though this is an old-fashioned way of communicating, your elderly might get comfort from this as they’ll be able to call up friends and relatives . So try to keep this one functional in case your elderly wants to call up someone.
Legal Requirements To Keep Track Of
You’ll also need to monitor your legal requirements to ensure proper care of your elderly. Some of these requirements are given below
- Financial Records of Your Elderly – This doesn’t come to mind that often until you are the one caring for your elderly. This is important since the medication and health care funds may be those of your elderly from their productive years. If you are the one buying medication for your elderly, you should retain the receipts from the medication purchase in case other relatives have questions. This also holds true for food and incidental expenses.
- Planning For Elderly’s Death – It is equally important to anticipate the death of your elderly, since it happens to anyone. The key is to be prepared for it. Your elderly may still be lucid and clear thinking enough to go over these plans so you should keep them in a safe place until your elderly wants to read them.
The caregiver responsibilities get extremely stressful so you need to be prepared for the most challenging situations that crop up. Although being organized will certainly not turn back the clock for your elderly, but you’ll know that at least you are providing a valuable service in this difficult time of their life. Be sure to go over the items mentioned here so you will be ready, especially when other relatives and friends of your elderly ask questions about the care you are providing.
Updated: May 25, 2020