10 things to discuss with elderly parents


Children need to talk to elderly parents about health care, health insurance or financial issues, instead of making their own decisions.

Ask about medical care

It is important to ask parents about the health care services they are using, to share a list of regular doctors and how to contact them. This helps you understand the condition of the elderly and contact them in case of an emergency.

But before talking with the doctor, you need to consult with your parents, see if they agree or not. It is important to let them know that you respect their privacy at all times and only contact your dispatching physician, in an emergency.

Discussing medical expenses, health insurance

Medical and health care costs are quite high, so it’s important to make sure your parents can afford to cover the bills. In case your parents do not have health insurance, you should suggest buying a gift.

Check the level of knowledge of the elderly about drugs

Most elderly people often take multiple medications and supplements, which increases the risk of side effects and can be life-threatening if the drugs are mixed. Confirm that parents can self-administer medication and check their understanding of each medication.

Is your current residence still suitable?

To know exactly if your current apartment makes your parents feel comfortable, you need to listen to them. You also try asking them if they want to move to another apartment, easier to maintain and easier to move?

In case the elderly still want to stay in the old place, you need to check and install assistive devices to make the house safer.

Tactfully inquire about the health problems of the elderly. Illustration: Brightside

Delicately ask about legal issues

Asking the elderly about property division is very tactless, but very important. To avoid the sudden death of parents without leaving a will, you can mention it in advance so that they have time to think and prepare. Although this is a sensitive and very difficult topic, families need to be clear: parents are aging, life time is becoming limited.

Suggest a place to keep important papers and documents

Knowing where parents keep important documents can reduce the search process when parents are hospitalized or have dementia. While grandparents are lucid, you can suggest to keep or know the necessary documents such as birth certificate, marriage certificate, insurance card and financial papers … where to keep, in case of need.

Discuss financial situation

Not a manager, but you need to have a specific, clear plan for your parents’ insurance and pension. At the same time, you should check if they have bad debt or not.

Choose a suitable time to ask if they are willing to provide you or a trusted person with power of attorney for financial matters, in case the parents cannot manage on their own. Another option is to set up a joint account, where you can help them handle their finances and pay bills, if needed.

Discuss health concerns and care options

By knowing your loved one’s health problems and concerns, you can help them determine the types of care for the future.

Besides, you should find out what long-term health care your parents want. They need someone to take care of them face-to-face; in nursing homes; Or move in with your children or other relatives? Give options to parents to decide.

Keep asking for help even if you’re turned down

Elderly people often find it difficult to accept the fact that they are losing their strength and ask for help. This can be a complicated topic, takes a long time to discuss, and is rejected in most cases.

That’s why children need to value their parents’ feelings and approach the problem gently. Over time older people can realize they really need help and make life easier. Then they can trust you more.

Encourage staying active and socializing

Research demonstrates that staying active can increase life expectancy and contribute to reversing the aging process. In particular, social interaction plays an important role in happiness at all ages.

According to the researchers, older people who are socially integrated are better emotionally and physically. Therefore, children need to talk and suggest activities that parents find interesting to participate in.

Minh Phuong (According to Brightside)

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