There’s nothing pleasant about watching your parents get older. They used to be so full of life and had no problems keeping up with their lively children.
However, when the grey starts setting in and they begin to have difficulty getting around, it’s hard to reconcile the fact that they are getting old.
Sure, every year on their birthday you may tease them about getting old, but it’s a sobering moment when the teasing turns into truth.
As people get older, they are going to be more prone to falling down and getting hurt. As our parent’s children, we want to protect them from getting hurt, naturally. Even with all of our good intentions, actually having that conversation isn’t going to be easy.
So, how do you convince your elderly parent that using a walker or cane is a good idea?
When you broach the subject about using a mobility aid, they might have the assumption that they are going to lose mobility because they have to lug around a bulky device.
You have to remind them that they are going to be able to maintain, or even increase, their mobility. Lots of people who use canes are able to walk further distances without getting winded or feeling like they need to sit.
You wouldn’t get into a car without buckling your seat belt, right? So why should someone who is prone to falls or has balance problems walk without some kind of assistance? They shouldn’t. You can remind your aging parent of this and even hit them with a few numbers:
- 1 in 10 falls in people over 85 results in a fractured hip
- 25% of these people die within 6 months of their injury
- 50% of elderly who have a fall-related injury will be admitted to a nursing facility, instead of going home.
Talk To A Doctor
Most elderly people still trust the opinion of their healthcare provider. If you aren’t having any luck in convincing your aged parents that they need a walker or a cane, make an appointment to visit the family doctor.
Not only will the doctor be able to recommend that they do (or do not) need a walking aid, they can also go over safety tips for using the walker so your loved one feels confident about using them.
You’d be surprised by how many folks are resistant to using walkers because they look like something from an institution. If they are concerned about the look of these devices, you can show them that there are many different styles of walking canes they can choose from.
Encouraging your loved one that it is time they consider using a walking aid isn’t going to be a fun or easy task. But when you finally do convince them, you can rest assured in knowing they are less likely to get hurt than without the device.