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Home for the Holidays: Check on Older Loved Ones

Whether you’re heading over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house, or flying in on a jet plane, there’s no place like home for the holidays. As you visit older relatives you may not see very often, most importantly, enjoy each other’s company when you get together. But also take advantage of family time to observe your older loved ones’ home, safety, health, finances and support system.

Here are some tips about what to ask about and look for:

Home – Does it meet their needs for safety and quality of life?

Getting Around – Are they able to get where they need to go safely when they need to get there?

Health – Are they keeping up with their health needs and medications?

Finances – Are they managing?

Support System – Who do they depend on?

If you see any red flags in these or other areas, schedule another visit, phone call or video chat to address them soon. Be clear that you are not trying to take over their lives or make decisions for your loved ones – you want to support them so they can be as independent as possible for as long as possible. That’s the best goal for all of you.

Happy Holidays!

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