Being a family caregiver is hard enough. When you live in another state or country, distance caregiving is extremely difficult. Here are some ways you can ease the struggles of distance caregiving.
Stick to Tasks That Are Easy to Do From Afar
You won’t be able to help your parents with day-to-day care, but there are things you can do from a distance. If you’re good with money, offer to help with household finances. You can pay bills online, check accounts, and verify deposits go through as expected.
When you’re a distance caregiver, you can research medical insurance, prescription costs, and finding doctors. You can support your siblings or other family caregivers when you listen to their frustrations and provide emotional support.
You could spend your time online setting up a grocery delivery by asking family caregivers to keep a list of what’s almost out. Arrange to have it delivered right to the home and save a caregiver some time. When the order is placed, let the caregiver know when it will be arriving.
Ask to Have Caregiver Communication Apps Used
There are many apps today that make it easy to coordinate elderly care and keep everyone updated on the daily news. Ask your family to set one up. You can log in, read what’s going on, and offer supportive messages if allowed.
Some programs allow photo sharing, which can brighten your parents’ day. There are programs that track medications, so a long-distance caregiver could be the one to make sure prescription refills are ordered on a timely basis.
Skype and Facebook are two ways you can chat via video with your parents. You can also simply pick up the phone. Clear your schedule so that you can talk to your parents and their caregivers. If you make it clear you want to be as active as possible in your parents’ care, you’re not going to get shut out or ignored by the family caregivers who are there daily.
Try to Visit Every Few Months
If possible, try to visit every few months. This is going to depend on how far you are from your parents. During your visits, ask for a brief training session and offer to take over and give the usual caregivers a break.
Don’t Ignore Your Parents Changing Elderly Care Needs
One thing you shouldn’t do is ignore the care your parents’ needs. A parent in need of elderly care shouldn’t have to try to manage. Elderly care services can help your mom and dad with transportation, medication reminders, housekeeping, and meals. That’s just a start. Learn more by calling an elderly care agency.