Your elderly mom is infirm and her dementia is worsening. She lives many miles away from you; what should you do? You could check out some facilities and see if that would be a viable option. How about keeping her in her home? Many seniors prefer to stay at home, surrounded by the familiar things in their life, like family pictures, the home they raised their children in, the mementos that were collected over a lifetime.
Some arrangements are difficult to make over the phone, some are easy. It also depends on how confident you are in hiring a handyman or carpentry service you are not familiar with. Many grown children find it easier to make a trip to go see mom and while there, oversee what needs to be done.
Assess your mom’s home for yourself. Is it going to be an appropriate place for her to remain taking all her health issues into consideration? Would it be better to sell the furniture, keep the favorite mementos and move her into an apartment or assisted living facility? With an in-person assessment you might be able to answer all of your own questions.
What kind of personality type is your mom? Is she very sociable; would she blossom in an assisted living community? Or perhaps she is more of a home body and would enjoy the peace and quiet of her own home in her own neighborhood and use the help of a caregiver or live-in caregiver.
The choice to keep mom in her home means that you need to hire someone to install grab bars, railings and possibly ramps to make her home safe and accessible to her. Make sure all these things are done in compliance with local building codes and safety standards. Using a professional service will probably bring you better results than hiring a handyman service and hoping they know what they are doing.
Living alone in an atmosphere of isolation is not meant for anyone. Even for the shy quiet person; everyone needs human contact. Make sure your mom is taken care of socially, especially if you’re not there to check in on her. Her caregiver can take her to social functions and drive her places she wants to go. An escorted outing to a social or public event once in a while can give your mom the human contact she wants and needs.