Talking to Parents About Health & Safety: Doctor Laura Green, Physical Therapist

One of the most difficult conversations a child will have with their parent is about concerns for the parent’s health, safety and wellness as they age.  If your parent is at higher risk of falls, Fall Detect by KamiCare might be needed to help keep your parent safe and independent.  Laura Green, Doctor of Physical Therapy, provides guidance to families for how to have the most productive and respectful conversation with their aging parent. 

For the full discussion, view the video above.

Talking to Parents About Health & Safety, Doctor Laura Green, Physical Therapist

So it’s time to talk to your parent about your concerns for their health, safety and wellness, and you have no idea where to start.  Makes sense, your parents have been independent for their entire adult lives. So here are some tips of things that I’ve learned as a physical therapist when having this conversation with parents and their families.

Let your parent guide the conversation. Oftentimes people get kind of lost in these tangents and you want to redirect your parent, bring them back to the point. Resist the urge to do that. Oftentimes, there’s a story behind a story. So if they’re trying to communicate something to you, something that explains the emotion behind their decision making and it will help you understand their point of view better and meet in the middle.

Enlist allies. Gather your siblings, people that your parents trust and respect, and make sure that you’re all on the same page. 

Do not embarrass your parents when they have trouble with new technology. New technology is hard, and as easy as the KamiCare home based fall detection system is to install and then you’re done with it, it’s still hard to process and figure out.  Your parent may have questions, such as:  “Is this thing recording me all the time?” It’s not. And also, “How is this going to communicate to my family members and friends?” Just have a little bit of patience with it. (You can learn more about Fall Detect by KamiCare here)

Ask thoughtful questions and don’t just state your needs. This goes back to letting them lead the conversation. Asking thoughtful questions allows them to feel heard and like they are a part of the decision making, which they are. If you go in hard just seeking one answer and to make the decision quickly, you likely will get a little bit more pushback. 

So I hope these tips help in at least facilitating an easier conversation with your parent.

Keep learning:

Anita – Fall Detect Lets You Receive Alerts in Real-Time

Fall Detect by KamiCare Insights with Marilyn Lawson

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