iStock_000060758036_Medium-300x200Coming home for the holidays is something we all long for, to be with the extended family we’re unable to see as much as we’d like. And although we may stay in touch with our loved ones from afar through phone calls, emails, and old-fashioned letter writing, there’s nothing better than wrapping your arms around that special family member and seeing her smile in person.

What if you discover, however, that the twinkle in her eyes has dimmed, her personal hygiene has been neglected, or she seems more frail and less stable on her feet? These particular details don’t come through in long distance relationships, but can be sharply brought into focus during the holiday season when families come together.

As Dr. Richard Schulz, a University of Pittsburgh Medical Center professor of psychiatry explains, “That’s where the discrepancy comes, in between how well we thought they were doing compared to actually seeing them live.”

What’s the best way to address these concerns? If it appears to be a crisis situation, a physician should be contacted immediately. Otherwise, waiting until after the holidays have passed can make the idea of getting help more palatable. Be sure to accompany your loved one to the doctor if at all possible, or, arrange for a professional home care agency, like Regency Home Care, to provide the accompaniment, so that all concerns are properly relayed and the doctor’s directions are clearly understood.

Often, the holidays are a time when it’s determined that a little extra senior care at home in north Atlanta would be beneficial. If you discover that your senior loved one may be in need of some assistance, call on Regency Home Care to arrange for a free in-home consultation and safety assessment. Our professional north Atlanta home care team can advise you of recommendations to make the home environment safer, and can partner with you to provide supportive services to enhance your loved one’s quality of life. Contact us to learn more, and avoid those unexpected surprises next holiday season!