Your loved one may occasionally refuse to take a bath, take their medication, or simply act uncooperatively. On top of that, they may refuse the care they desperately need. Many factors could lead a senior to act in this way. When they require assistance with something, they could feel embarrassed or stressed out from not having control. They might not comprehend what you are asking of them. Although this may be upsetting, keep in mind that they are not attempting to make your life more difficult. Here are a few things you can do when a senior refuses care.
Identify Potential Causes
It may be helpful to recall the events that occurred just before the issue arose:
- Does it happen when you bathe or change clothes for them?
- Could they be reacting to the frustration or anger you may be expressing in your speech or face?
- Do they have too much tasks to do?
- Could it be that they are unable to comprehend what is occurring or being said to them?
Forgetfulness is a major sign of Alzheimer’s disease as well. If you’ve noticed signs like these, reach out to a doctor. A memory care community is also a place that can provide your loved one with round-the-clock adequate care, should they be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Change the Way You Interact With Your Loved One
Once you have identified the issue, you can improve your relationship with your loved one through a few adjustments in how you communicate to them:
- Even if you’re annoyed, angry, or frustrated, try to speak as gently and calmly as you can. If it’s possible, take a short break and exhale deeply. Your loved one may be able to tell when you’re stressed just by the way you speak and act.
- Your loved one may be able to tell when you’re stressed just by the way you speak and act, so be mindful of how you come across
- Give them some space if they’re agitated, then try again later. Don’t make your loved one perform an action they don’t want to.
- If you can, give them simple options when a decision has to be made.
- Tell them what to do and why in succinct, straightforward language. Don’t instruct them on what not to do.
- Give directions that are only 1 or 2 steps and break jobs down into basic steps. Before you do anything, especially before touching them, let them know that you are about to do it.
Sometimes, your loved one may refuse care because they are afraid of change. Telling them anecdotes of other seniors who have gone through similar situations and come out stronger is one way to reduce their anxieties over receiving care for their condition.
You can also reassure them of the things in their routine and life that will stay constant even if they undergo a care program.
Reach Out to Professionals
Sometimes, medical professionals and professional caregivers are best at convincing seniors to undergo the care and treatment that they need. If you’re interested in finding a care community for your loved one, feel free to contact us.