Aging Well: Choosing a Nursing Home
Finding the right nursing home can help you or your loved one feel safe and cared for. A good first step to choosing a nursing home is to make a list of homes you might be interested in. Talk to family, friends, doctors, and others to get recommendations of good nursing homes. If you can, it's good to plan ahead so you have time to learn all you can about the nursing homes you're interested in. If you need to make a decision quickly, try to visit the nursing homes on your list at least once before you choose. Make sure you understand the cost and payment options for each nursing home. What do you need to know about choosing a nursing home? Why is it so important to visit the nursing home in person? How can you be sure you're choosing the right nursing home? Where can you learn more about choosing the right nursing home?Return to topic:Writing an Advance Directive
The Legal Issues of Caregiving
Being a caregiver also involves making legal preparations for your loved one. Learn how.
Preventing Falls in Older Adults Who Take High-Risk Medicines - Topic Overview
What does high-risk mean?High-risk means that a medicine can cause serious health problems or accidents. High-risk doesn't always mean do not use. It can mean use with care when a medicine is more likely to help you than harm you. If your doctor prescribes a medicine that may make you feel confused, drowsy, or dizzy, pay attention to how it affects your balance and how it makes you feel. Take extra care to prevent a fall. A fall can lead to serious problems that can change your quality of life.How can you prevent falls when you take high-risk medicine?Be prepared for side effects As you age, your body changes. When you take a medicine, you may get a stronger effect now than when you were younger. For example, you may get more dizzy or drowsy. And you may be more likely to have dangerous side effects when you take more than one medicine. For example, taking a pain medicine along with a sleep medicine could cause you to stop breathing.To help avoid serious side effects, talk to your
Questions to Ask About Your Medicines - Topic Overview
It's important to know as much as possible about the medicines you're taking. Here are some examples of questions you might ask your doctor or pharmacist: What can you tell me about this medicine? How will I know that this medicine is working? How long will it take before I notice anything? Will I need any tests while I'm on this medicine? Is an older or less expensive generic version available? ...
Patient Assistance Programs for Prescription Drugs
If you cannot afford the prescription medications you need, you may be eligible for patient assistance programs offered by drug makers or state governments.
Eldercare Mediation - Topic Overview
Dorothy was in her late 80s and had been losing her balance a lot. Her son thought it was time for her to move into a nursing home. Her daughter wanted her to go into an assisted-living facility. Dorothy just wanted to stay in her own home. The three of them argued for months about this. In the meantime, Dorothy fell twice. She escaped serious injury, but the falls just made them all argue more. Then a friend told Dorothy about eldercare mediators. Dorothy immediately made an appointment with a local mediator. After a few meetings, the mediator helped Dorothy and her children agree to hire a handyman to make Dorothy's house safe from fall hazards. They also made plans to hire a nurse to check in on Dorothy twice a day. The family will meet again in 3 months to see if they need to change Dorothy's care plan.What is eldercare mediation?Eldercare mediation is the process of working with someone to help families deal with the legal, health, and emotional issues that come with aging.
Writing an Advance Directive - Preparing an Advance Directive
Getting startedDo not wait for your doctor to bring up the subject of an advance directive. To help yourself develop a clear idea of your wishes, think about the kinds of medical treatments you would or would not want in different situations. See the checklist for writing an advance directive to help guide you through some of the things you may want to consider.Involve your family, your health ...
Writing an Advance Directive - Why an Advance Directive Is Important
An advance directive is crucial for having control over your own medical care if you become unable to make decisions or cannot communicate your wishes. It is also a way to share your feelings with your family and help them if they ever need to make decisions about your medical treatment. An advance directive may become important if you are severely injured or develop a serious illness that ...
Writing an Advance Directive - Topic Overview
What is an advance directive?An advance directive is a legal document that helps ensure that your health care wishes will be respected if you become unable to speak or otherwise communicate. In the absence of a written document, sometimes an advance directive may be an oral communication, where you express your wishes for care verbally to your family members or health care agent. An advance ...
Advance Directive: What to Include - Topic Overview
A living will and a medical power of attorney are types of advance directives. These forms describe the kinds of medical care you want to receive if you're badly hurt or have a serious illness that keeps you from saying what you want. A medical power of attorney lets you name a person to be your health care agent. He or she can make decisions for you if you can't speak for yourself. Forms are ...