Looking After an Elderly Relative: Things to Consider

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At a point, life can seem to flip around in some ways – the parents or grandparents who once looked after you, raised you, and made you who you are today, can no longer look after themselves.

It is heartbreaking to see but you want to ensure that you return the favour, and give them the best possible final years of life. Let’s explore some of the ways you can do this.


Insurance and Legalities

Helping your loved one to get all of their official documentation, such as wills and insurance, in place before their time comes, means that there are no complications further down the line.

This means that they won’t have any unnecessary stress in their last few weeks of life, if everything is prepared in advance. Talk to them about what they want to happen when they die, although an uncomfortable subject, it is one that needs to be addressed so that you can put processes in place. For examples of different life insurance options, compare multiple decreasing term life insurance here.

What Makes Them Happy

Once you have all of the official paperwork out the way, and that isn’t weighing them down, you should think about what makes them happy. What have their lifetime hobbies been? Whether they’re sporty, animal lovers, or bookworms, try to incorporate their passions into their later years where you can.

Looking After an Elderly Relative

Provide them with opportunities that they will enjoy. This could be a trip to the local pool, a visit to a petting zoo, or gifting them a limited edition release of their favourite book. Thoughtful, small gestures like this will really enhance their life. 

Their Comfort

Getting old isn’t always a pleasant experience. The aches and pains grow stronger, simple tasks become difficult, and the brain often slows down. With this in mind, you need to ensure the person you are looking after is as comfortable as possible. Make sure they always have everything they need, and they aren’t doing anything that will put them at risk.

Although they may not want the fuss, ensure you’re always there for them should they need any help. Don’t allow them to feel isolated or lonely, which is an unfortunate fate for many people in their last few years of life. 

The Story of Their Life

Death is an unpredictable curse, which means that you have no time to waste when it comes to learning as much as possible about your elderly relatives. Ask them questions about their life. Look at old pictures of their younger years with them. Write down interesting stories they have to tell. This will not only be cathartic for them, it will allow you to really learn about who they are and what they’ve been through. It can be an eye-opening practice that will leave you feeling closer than ever. 


Although the ageing process can be an unforgiving one, by taking these ideas into consideration, you’ll enable your elderly relative to maximise their later years. 

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