Adjusting to life after a stroke isn’t easy. Strokes can cause significant disability, including the inability to use one arm. Although you may be tempted to do everything for your aging loved one after a stroke, it may make them feel useless and reduce their sense of self-worth. Instead of doing things for them, it can be more helpful to find ways for them to adapt tasks, so they can do them independently. One thing that can be essential to continuing to live in their homes is the ability to keep the house clean. Below are several tips for adapting cleaning tasks for stroke survivors.
Make a List.
Try making a list of all the tasks that need to be done to keep the house clean. Once the list is done, divide the tasks into three categories:
- Tasks the stroke survivor can do every time without putting themselves at risk or becoming too tired.
- Tasks they can do sometimes when they are feeling well enough.
- Tasks that are impossible given their abilities.
Next, determine if some of the more difficult tasks can be modified so that the older adult can at least assist with them. Those that cannot be modified should be assigned to a family caregiver or an elderly care provider.
Divide Tasks into Steps.
There’s no rule that says large tasks have to be done all in one day. Instead, divide them up so that your aging relative can tackle them in steps when they are able. For example, they could sort laundry in the morning, then load the washer at night. The next day they can fold the laundry, then put it away the following day.
Use a Different Position.
Some tasks can be made easier simply by doing them sitting down. For example, instead of standing up while dusting, the senior could sit in a chair and use a long-handled duster to extend reach.
Use a Different Tool.
Look for alternative tools that can make a job easier. Instead of using a full-sized, heavy vacuum, try a hand-held vacuum or a lighter stick model.
Of course, even when tasks are adapted, they can still be too much for an older adult, especially in the first few months following a stroke. Elderly care can assist with housecleaning during the initial recovery period when rest may be more important. Elderly care providers can do things like vacuuming, dusting, sweeping, and laundry. Elderly care can also assist with things other than cleaning, including dressing, bathing, using the toilet, and preparing healthy meals.
If you or an aging family member are considering professional elderly care in Bay Shore, NY, please call the caring staff at A Gentle Touch Senior Home and Health Care at 631-647-7622 today.