March 19, 2019

doctor showing senior man medication schedule

Aging parents may resist seeing the doctor. Try this tactic to ensure they get the care they need.

Let’s face it: a lot of us put off visiting the doctor’s office. It may be uncomfortable and downright frightening when something is wrong and we’re confronted with the chance of an undesirable diagnosis. Yet we know it makes sense to complete what’s best for our health and wellness as well as be conscientious about getting necessary medical care.

For aging parents, various other issues enter into play as well, often resulting in the choice to skip that check-up or follow-up appointment, even when it is clearly not in their best interest. Whenever an older adult digs in her heels, refusing to see the doctor, it is beneficial to first understand why the opposition is happening, to address those concerns, and be able to understand how best to provide support.

One of the main reasons seniors skip medical appointments and procedures is fear. It might appear safer and easier just to disregard symptoms and hope they’ll fix themselves on their own. For other individuals, the worry might be financial. Or they might want to prevent the awkwardness of being reminded of a weight problem, or to acknowledge living an unhealthy lifestyle.

Regardless of the cause, the bottom line is that it is crucial for older adults to address their health issues, which requires routine medical examinations and remaining proactive in bringing to light any questions. So as an adult child, how might you best help overcome your parent’s objections to seeing the doctor?

At Continuum, providing professional assistance with home care that St. Louis families trust, we’ve learned that one of the most effective ways to persuade aging parents to take care of themselves is by their adult children sharing what it means to them. Our parents have cared for us all of our lives, and would like what is the best for us. Communicating your point of view can make a difference towards persuading them of the need and ultimately supporting them to stay healthy. As an example, try starting the conversation like this:

“Mom, the pain you’ve been having in your wrist is really concerning me. Can we go to have that checked out so that I am able to stop worrying?”

You might be pleasantly surprised at how easily your aging parent will agree, realizing that it helps you. Should you continue to struggle with getting your parent to understand the need for proper health care, call on Continuum. We are experienced in assisting families with navigating the sometimes difficult transition to agree to help at home, and often the advice of a knowledgeable, objective 3rd party can make an enormous amount of difference in alleviating worries and shifting the focus to the many advantages of in-home care. Call us at (314) 863-9912 to learn more.