Mental illness and other possible health problems for the elderly

Knowing that a mother or father is getting on in years but not being able to visit him or her everyday can cause an adult child to worry. It's understandable that aging parents would like to maintain as much independence as possible. Their children typically want the same for them but also want to make sure that living independently is what's best for their parents. If mental illness or another serious health problem is suspected, it may be time to access support resources in Georgia.

There are various signs that might be present if an elderly person is suffering an undiagnosed mental or physical illness. Knowing what the signs are and also how to access support when needed can help keep parents safe and well. When adult children are visiting their parents' homes, they can pay close attention to certain things to help gauge the condition of their parents' mental and physical well-being.

For instance, a disheveled appearance on occasion is not surprising for someone in their later years; however, if an aging parent looks as though he or she is not engaging in daily hygiene care or is wearing clothing that is completely out of season (i.e. winter coat in the dead of summer), it could be a sign of dementia. Memory loss is also par for the course for most people as they age. If a parent forgets the names of his or her own children, however, or keeps asking the same things over and over, there may be an underlying problem.

If signs of mental illness exist, it may mean that a parent is no longer safe living independently. If the health issues are physical in nature, it still might mean that outside help (perhaps permanent living assistance) is needed. In some situations, a conservator is appointed to take over the affairs of an aging parent's property and finances. An experienced Georgia elder law attorney can help explain the process and can assist with any other legal aspect regarding an elderly parent's mental or physical health condition and living arrangements.

Source: mayoclinic.org, "Aging parents: 8 warning signs of health problems", Accessed on Dec. 21, 2017

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