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Questions To Ask Your Aging Parent’s Doctor

If you’re caring for your aging parent, going along with them to their doctors’ appointments can help both of you in a variety of ways. You can make sure your mom or dad understands the doctor’s instructions while also receiving valuable information that can help your parent’s physical and mental health.

The following are some questions about senior living you’ll want to ask your aging parent’s doctor at their next visit:

Are all their prescribed medications necessary?

As parents age, they often take a fairly long list of medications that may be prescribed by several doctors. Keep a list of your parent’s medications and discuss it with the doctor. Ask if they’re all still necessary and if any could cause troubling side effects, particularly when combined with other medications. And if your parent is prescribed a new medication, ask whether it can cause any interactions and for how long they’ll need to take it.

Are there physical and mental changes I should watch out for?

Seniors can undergo physical and mental changes as they age, so ask your parent’s doctor what you should keep an eye out for. For example, you should be aware of any changes in your parent’s ability to carry out activities of daily living, such as bathing or showering and feeding themselves. The doctor may also recommend looking for any cognitive changes that may be cause for concern as well as a decreased ability to perform tasks of senior living such as keeping the house clean and running errands. By knowing the specific changes to look for, you can ensure your parent receives any needed assistance as quickly as possible.

Are my parent’s nutritional needs being met? 

Seniors can have a reduced appetite for several different reasons. Your parent may not be eating well because cooking has become more difficult. They may also be experiencing health issues or side effects from a medication that interferes with their appetite. Ask your doctor about your parent’s specific nutritional needs. Should your parent meet with a dietitian who works with seniors? Do they need help preparing meals, or should they be taking any type of supplement?

How can I help prevent falls?

Aging parents can be at risk of having a fall that threatens their health and reduces their ability to live and function well independently. About 3 million emergency room visits were because of a senior adult falling, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ask your parent’s doctor if there are signs of decreased mobility to look for as well as any changes that should be made to your parent’s home environment. Also ask about medications that could negatively affect their balance and whether exercises could help your parent.

Does my parent need more help than I can provide?

You and your parent may reach the point where they need more help than you can provide. They may, for example, need skilled care. Or perhaps they would benefit from being around other people to socialize and share meals and activities with. A senior living community like Park Central may be just what your parent needs. With several communities that provide everything from apartment living to certified memory care, skilled nursing care, and rehabilitation, Park Central offers a continuum of senior living care that can serve your parent as their needs change.

To learn more about how you can help your aging parent, contact Park Central in Amarillo, TX to take a tour of our senior living communities and enjoy a meal with us. Call 806-337-5700 or contact us online.