Signs Of The Times
So many older people who are living alone want to continue on this path. First, they don’t like change which gets more difficult as we age,w and most importantly, living alone is their last grasp on being independent. There is an entire national movement called the Village concept that promotes older people growing older in their homes by providing the necessary support to keep them there.
Ways To Maintain Independence
The Harvard Newsletter recently addressed the issue of how to live alone longer. They claim there are 3 surefire ways to accomplish independent living. They are: safety, socializing and utilizing helpful services.
How To Overcome Challenges
The obvious risks that living alone entails are the lack of communication if you become ill and the social isolation of eating many meals alone. The willingness to accept help in these areas is somehow misconstrued as a weakness. Geriatric social workers maintain we need to help people rethink their fears about accepting tools that are available to help them and view them as assets.
Another challenge; safety, can be circumvented by the use of a safety alert button that is waterproof and stays with you 24/7. There are available services that don’t have a start-up fee and have minimal monthly charges. Also recommended is having an emergency supply kit available for those times when there is a storm or power outage. This kit should include food and water and b e kept in a pantry.
There will come a time when you will have to turn over the keys to the car and/or have trouble physically navigating the grocery store. Tailor made services are out there at your beckoning! Many groceries, pharmacies and restaurants will deliver so make those calls. Also senior centers offer free or low cost rides to take you places. Join a Village in your neighborhood — they will provide a companion to take you to the theater or the doctor.
Home services are also offer a way of having your home cleaned, meals cooked and medications dispensed. These services may be more costly, but so is moving to assisted living.
May you live independently for many more years!