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What are the signs that an aging parent needs a guardian?

On Behalf of | Jan 12, 2024 | Guardianship

As people age, their ability to take care of themselves may decline. The signs that a parent needs assistance are there for everyone to see.

Recognition of the clues that an aging mother or father could use a guardian is every adult child’s responsibility.

Cognitive decline

One of the primary indicators that a parent might benefit from having a guardian is a noticeable degradation of intellectual abilities. Memory loss, confusion and difficulty making decisions are common among those living out their golden years. Sadly, dementia strikes one in 10 older Americans. If a parent struggles to recall details or is experiencing trouble with daily tasks, it may be time to assign someone who can provide round-the-clock support.

Neglect of personal care

A parent requiring a guardian may overlook self-care. This could manifest as poor hygiene, unkempt living conditions or forgetting to take medication. An observable decline in physical wellness or living environment may suggest that someone should be assisting with daily activities.

Financial mismanagement

Another red flag is the mishandling of money. If a parent is experiencing financial problems, naming a guardian could be appropriate. Unpaid bills, excessive spending and falling victim to scams are definite concerns.

Medical neglect

Unattended medical issues or a failure to follow prescribed treatments can be a clear signal that an aging parent might benefit from outside assistance. Depending on the circumstances, the situation could require a full-time guardian to ensure proper care.

On occasion, there comes a point where assigning a guardian to an aging parent is for the best. The quicker adult children recognize the indicators, the faster they can look for appropriate caregivers.