Going to the doctor isn’t something most people put at the top of their list of favorite things to do. However, seniors must make regular visits to the doctor to keep up their physical health. Whether your aging loved one refuses to get a symptom checked out or balks at even going for an annual exam, you can use these strategies to encourage him or her to see a physician.
Understand the Motivation for Not Wanting to Go
Trying to put yourself in your parent’s shoes may help you identify the possible reasons he or she doesn’t want to go to the doctor. For instance, your loved one may have developed a fear of going to the doctor if he or she recently experienced a treatment that involved a lot of pain. Alternatively, a shy or modest parent may dread having to undergo a physical exam. If you cannot identify a reason on your own, ask your parent. He or she may be willing to share the reasons, and you can use this information to start planning how to help him or her overcome those concerns.
Work Toward Changing His or Her Perspective
Your loved one may have fears of receiving a new diagnosis during a doctor visit. While these fears may be understandable, your loved one must learn how to push past them so he or she gets help. Alternatively, your loved one may be afraid of being told how to live his or her life. To calm these concerns, tell your loved one the appointment is simply to help him or her learn about the options. Even if he or she receives an upsetting diagnosis, your loved one still retains control over how he or she chooses to treat the condition.
You may have some of the same fears your parent does, and that’s only natural—we worry about our loved ones. But it’s important to take of yourself, too, and professionals can help. Family caregivers sometimes need a break from their caregiving responsibilities. When they need respite care, Colorado Springs families can rely on professional caregivers to help their senior loved ones remain safe at home.
Go to the Appointment Together
During the senior years, even a routine visit can turn serious if the doctor detects a new or unusual symptom such as memory loss. For this reason, your loved one may be afraid of going to the doctor and receiving upsetting news while he or she is alone. Ask your loved one if he or she would like a supportive companion for the appointment.
If you aren’t able to go with your loved one to his or her appointment, it may help to have a trusted professional go along. Colorado Springs home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
Suggest a Consultation Visit
Visiting a new doctor is often enough to stir up a senior’s nerves. If your loved one must change primary physicians or visit a specialist, suggest going for a consultation without the pressure of a physical exam. Although these visits are often brief, they allow seniors to build connections that make it easier to go to the next appointment.
Continue to Practice Patience
Stubborn seniors often need time to come to the right decision. Once you’ve offered assistance and made your case, give your parent a little time to think it all over. Then, bring the subject back up again. By practicing patience and compassion, you can avoid a standoff and instead look forward to finally hearing your parent say that he or she has scheduled an important appointment.
For seniors who want to stay healthy, it’s important that they don’t avoid seeing the doctor when it’s necessary. Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Colorado Springs, CO, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver. Home Care Assistance is here to help. To talk to one of our Care Managers, call (719) 822-1229 today.