Behaviors Which Might Indicate Your Older Family Member Needs Help:

[resized_image width=”400″ height=”250″ image=”×400.jpg” lightbox=”no”]Any one of the behaviors listed below may indicate that an action should be taken. Your family member’s physician should be kept informed of physical or psychological behavior changes.

Knowing exactly when someone needs help and what type of help is more of an art than a science. So give some careful thought to these questions. Think about the level and frequency you see or experience each one. If you are around a person infrequently, it’s very likely what you see occurs much more often than you think. And when you are around a person all the time, these things tend to “creep up on you” by occurring so slowly it’s hard to even notice until you look back several days, months or years.

Has your family member:

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  • Changed eating habits within the last year resulting in weight loss, having no appetite, or missed meals?
  • Neglected personal hygiene resulting in wearing dirty clothes, body odor, bad breath, neglected nails and teeth, sores on the skin?
  • Neglected their home so it is not as clean or sanitary as you remember?
  • Exhibited inappropriate behavior by being unusually loud or quiet, paranoid, agitated, making phone calls at all hours?
  • Changed relationship patterns such that friends and neighbors have expressed concerns?
  • Had physical problems such as burns or injury marks resulting from general weakness, forgetfulness, or possible misuse of alcohol or prescribed medications?
  • Decreased or stopped participating in activities that were previously important to them such as bridge or a book club, dining with friends, or attending religious services?
  • Exhibited forgetfulness resulting in unopened mail, piling newspapers, not filling their prescriptions, or missed appointments?
  • Mishandled finances such as not paying bills, losing money, paying bills twice or more, or hiding money?
  • Made unusual purchases such as buying more than one magazine subscription of the same magazine, entered an unusual amount of contests, increased usage of purchasing from television advertisements?