The holidays are a time that we can spend quality time with our loved ones that we may not get to see at other times of the year.   Due to COVID this year, spending time with our loved ones was twice as hard to do so as in years past.  Some families got creative by having bon fires or other outdoor events such as getting tents with heaters or some just quarantined or took COVID Tests prior to their gatherings. 

Regardless of how you celebrated your holiday, you may have seen some changes in your elderly loved one from your last visit.  There could be physical or cognitive changes that you noticed or just an overall withdrawal due to the last several months from isolation or anxiety or due to the virus. 

Whatever the changes that you noticed from your loved one you may come to realize that you are needing help in their appearance or they may seem more confused than the last time that you saw them.  You may also notice that they have lost or gained weight.  Some may even seem unsteady on their feet and may be a fall risk.  The first thing that you want to do is schedule an appointment with their physician.  Depending on how far away you live, you may see the need to call in a geriatric care manager that can access how serious any of these problems may be. 

You may be noticing signs of a much more serious problem such as early signs of dementia, depression from all the months of isolation or the lack of stability with their gait which could be the beginning stages of a neurological disorder.  After seeing your physician, the best way to know what is going on for sure is to have a geriatric care manager get involved to assess the situation.  This way you will know exactly what you are dealing with and you can get the proper diagnosis and get to the right doctors to enable the best quality of life for your loved one.

Also, if you are seeing a cognitive decline, you will want to make sure that you get your proper paperwork in order.  You may want to get a consultation with a Certified Elder Law Attorney to make sure that all their affairs are in order.  Being proactive in these situations could save you thousands of dollars in the long run.  At NJ Elder Law Center at Goldberg Law Group our motto is “Protect everyone you love and everything that you have earned”. An elder law attorney can help you to plan for your elderly loved ones to receive the best care and guidance they will require as they age.