Sometimes, it’s impossible to plan all aspects of your dad’s care in advance. He’s pretty active and lives alone. He still drives, cooks his own meals, and does most of his housework on his own. He seems to be doing well with your periodic visits for companionship.
All is going well until he slips and breaks his arm. Suddenly, his life is turned upside down. He can’t do much on his own now. He can’t pull up his pants without help. He definitely can’t button his pants or shirt. How can you help him find the right care plan for his recovery?
Ask His Doctor What He Can and Cannot Do
When he goes to an orthopedic specialist, he’ll have a list of things he can and cannot do. If his arm is in a cast, it may be waterproof or he may be told to keep it dry. That can make it hard for him to shower without help.
He will not be able to carry anything with that arm for several weeks or months. He’ll need help carrying in groceries. He’ll need someone to carry his laundry hamper to the laundry room. Even cooking dinner can be a challenge.
Your dad broke his right arm and drives a standard car. There’s no way he’ll be able to shift for now. He needs someone to drive him to appointments, bring him back home, and encourage him to do his physical therapy exercises.
A Surgery Can Change the Care Plan
From the moment he breaks his arm, he’s going to have lots of additional appointments. The trip to the ER will lead to x-rays and a temporary splint until he sees an orthopedic surgeon. That surgeon will decide if he needs surgery. If he does, he’s going to have prescription medications for pain. He may also need calcium supplements if his bones are thin.
You may not be able to take off time for each appointment he has. You may not be able to stop by his house each morning to remind him to take his medications and supplements.
Make Sure He’s Supported While He Heals
Home care is very helpful in a temporary situation like your dad’s. Arrange for the home care services he needs as he heals and reduce them from there. Starting out, he might want a full range of services that include laundry, meal preparation, housekeeping, transportation, and personal care.
As his arm heals and he moves from a cast to a splint or vice versa, he might want to take on more responsibilities. You can change them easily by calling our home care agency.