There are a few adages that people may remember when it comes to health and caregiving. Medical professionals recommend mammograms for women every year after age 40, and prostate exams for men every year at age 50.
But there’s another rule that many future caregivers are not aware of that can play a vital role in their loved one’s life. The 40/70 rule states that an adult child should begin conversations with their parents about senior health topics after the potential caregiver turns 40 or their parent turns 70, whichever comes first.
That can be a difficult conversation to have, because many future caregivers are hesitant to talk to their parents about their care. Their parents may be afraid to ask for help, and it can also be difficult for the caregiver to take charge in the relationship.
It can be especially challenging if an aging parent is starting to show signs of declining health. Look for early warning signs, such as memory lapses, trouble with night driving or decreasing balance. But Liberty HomeCare & Hospice Services can help get the process started. We offer free in-home assessments, and can help determine the right next step. Sometimes, home care, physical therapy or other care can make a big difference, both for the patient as well as their caregiver.
That’s what makes the 40/70 rule so vital. Many times, the conversation happens when a parent’s health has declined to a more serious state, and the challenges are multiplied. Liberty HomeCare & Hospice Services staff members understand that each situation is different, and may need to be addressed with a unique approach.
But the most important approach is starting the conversation early. By discussing care options when everyone is able to make clearer decisions, that can help create a better outcome for everyone.