How Can I Help My Older Parent Declutter?

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For seniors, clutter in the home can be a major health hazard, causing them to fall or lose important medications and paperwork, and it can even impact emotional health by making them feel overwhelmed. Many seniors have clutter because they’ve lived in their homes a long time or they’ve recently downsized and couldn’t stand to part with their belongings. If this sounds like your aging loved one, there are some things you can do to help him or her get rid of the clutter and live a happier, healthier life.

Donate Items

If your loved one isn’t happy about getting rid of unused belongings, point out that there are other people who can use them. Donating items to charities or people who are less fortunate may sound much better than throwing the items away. If your loved one has items that are new or gently used, you shouldn’t have any difficulty finding someone to give them to.

Getting rid of unused belongings can help older adults minimize safety hazards and enjoy a healthier life. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them attain this goal. Families can trust senior home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living longer and healthier lives.

Keep Your Loved One Involved

Never throw away things without asking your loved one about them. Don’t tell your loved one what to get rid of, as it could make him or her feel a loss of control during the cleanup process. Let your loved one help as much as possible, and remember to be patient.

Many older adults fear losing their independence when they age. Living independently is important for seniors who want to maintain a high quality of life. For some, this simply means receiving help with tasks that have become more challenging to manage over time. Even when families have the best intentions, they may not have the time to provide the care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. If your loved one needs help for a few hours a day or a few days a week, reach out to Assisting Hands Home Care, a trusted provider of home care Arlington seniors can depend on.

Focus on One Space at a Time

Cleaning the entire house at once could be overwhelming, so try focusing on one room or area at a time. Maybe you can devote a few hours to decluttering on Saturday afternoons for a month or two. One week you can work on the kitchen cabinets, and the next week you could work on the pantry. Divide the cleaning tasks in a way that doesn’t leave either of you tired or frustrated. Spreading the process out over several weeks or months may also make it less emotionally distressing for your loved one.

Sell Items

Your loved one may be more willing to part with unused belongings if he or she can sell them for some extra cash. For higher-end items, you can look into using a professional auction company or estate sale service. For everyday stuff, look to websites like eBay and Craigslist or try having a garage sale. Selling items may be especially helpful if your loved one is experiencing financial difficulties.

Consider Asking a Third Party to Help 

When debating what to keep and get rid of, you may reach a point where you and your loved one clash, especially if he or she wants to keep items you deem unnecessary. Instead of making your loved one feel like he or she is doing something wrong, bring in an expert on cleaning and organization to mediate and offer professional ideas and opinions. Make sure your loved one doesn’t feel uncomfortable or forced into the process of having a third party come into his or her home.

In addition to removing clutter, hiring a home caregiver can boost your loved one’s physical, mental, and emotional health. There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Assisting Hands Home Care is a leading Arlington home care service provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life. Call Assisting Hands Home Care at 703-997-5657 to learn more about our flexible and customizable senior care plans.