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Answer Nurse: Caregiving From a Distance

Family on bench

I don’t live near my parents, but I want to help care for them. How can I be helpful even though I live far away?

It can be difficult to know how to care for family members and loved ones when we don’t live close to them. But just because miles separate you, doesn’t mean that you can’t be a caregiver to them. Being a long-distance caregiver means that you’ll need to find additional resources to help your loved ones so they can age safely at home.

Hire professional caregivers

Home care is a valuable resource that helps long-distance caregivers. With private in-home care, you and your family can rest assure that your parents or aging loved one’s needs are being met. Home care offers personal care, nursing and companionship, allowing your loved ones to age safely and comfortably in their homes. As a long-distance caregiver, you can be involved with your loved one’s care and let the home health aides and companions assist with the day-to-day responsibilities.

 Stay organized

Make sure that you have a list of important contacts like physician names, medications and even financial documents (if needed) that you can reference if you have a question about your loved one’s care. Having all the important information organized in one place can help you be prepared if an unexpected health crisis occurs.

Visit when you can

Whether you are a short drive or plane trip away from your loved ones, try to schedule some time for a visit. It’s important to see your parents so you can see firsthand how they are feeling. But remember that the visit shouldn’t be focused primarily on talking about their care or health, but rather use your visit for fun activities and spending quality time with you parents.  

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