Heading out of the house for activities such as running errands is a fantastic way to boost your parent’s mental and emotional health, diversify their daily life, stimulate their mind, and help them to feel more independent and autonomous as they age.
Just as with anything else in your caregiver journey, it is extremely important to keep your parent’s safety in mind when planning any shopping excursion. Not only will this help prevent potential injuries, but it can also help your parent feel more secure and more motivated to be more active on a regular basis.
Use these tips to help your senior feel safe when out shopping:
- Always park in a well-lit area of the parking lot. Even if you are trying to get in extra steps by parking further out, find a place that is illuminated and has other cars.
- Back into a spot so the front doors of the car are more readily accessible.
- If approaching a parked car in the dark, shine a light under and around any nearby cars to check for people.
- If your parent feels uncomfortable, have them look for a security guard to provide an escrot to the car.
- Keep valuables out of sight in the vehicle. Tuck away electronics, purses, money, and valuable purchases under the seat, in the glove compartment, in the trunk, or in other locations.
- Help your parent stay aware of their surroundings when shopping. Keep money close to the body and not in a purse by their side where it is easy to access.
- If your parent is planning an extended shopping trip, such as to a large mall, consider having a mobility aid available for your parent. Even a senior who generally does not use one of these devices may need one when walking for a long period.
As a family caregiver, you should know that homecare is not just about the care and support your senior can receive in their home. Instead, the completely customized services of a homecare services provider can allow your parents to live a much more active, involved, and fulfilling life as a age-in-place.
Many of the tasks you take for granted on a daily basis, such as going shopping, can be extremely difficult or even impossible for your parent to manage on their own. Having a homecare provider with them means your parent is able to go out and do these things when they want or need to without having to wait for your schedule to accommodate it. This creates a greater sense of independence and autonomy, and boost mental and emotional health. As their family caregiver, you can have greater confidence with your parent pursuing this type of independence knowing that the homecare provider is with them and will help them to stay safe throughout their daily life.