Use IADLs and ADLs to Guide Your Mom’s Care Plan

Activities of daily living (ADLs) and instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) are a good way to assess how well your mom can live alone. ADLs cover things she must be able to do to survive. IADLs are tasks she needs to be able to complete in order to age at home comfortably and safely.

When you’re coming up with the elderly care services that most benefit your mom, ADLs and IADLs are the best way to decide. Use these lists to pinpoint where she needs care and where she can do things independently.

A List of ADLs

There are six main ADLs. They are:

  • Feeding oneself and drinking fluids to avoid dehydration
  • Bathing or showering independently
  • Using the toilet correctly, cleaning up after, and being able to hold the bladder
  • Walking from room to room and up and down stairs without help
  • Getting in and out of bed, a car, and standing up after sitting
  • Dressing oneself

The ADLs ensure a person can chew and swallow so that they fuel their body with vital nutrients. For aging adults who live alone, ADLs are the steps they take to stay clean and avoid bacterial infections. They can get up and move around, which helps avoid pressure sores. If they can’t do these independently, elderly care services that help with personal care, ambulation, feeding, and dressing.

A List of IADLs

IADLs cover a lot of ground. While ADLs cover swallowing liquids and foods, IADLs cover cooking those foods and getting the glass of water or juice. Other IADLs are:

  • Cleaning and housekeeping
  • Taking prescription medications correctly and ordering refills when needed
  • Choosing insurance coverage and plans
  • Laundry
  • Driving or being able to arrange a ride
  • Paying bills and depositing checks
  • Answering the phone and making calls
  • Creating shopping lists, budgeting, and buying groceries and other necessities

Caregivers can help with that, too. Your parents can have caregivers help them make payments on time. They can make calls to schedule appointments or order refills. Caregivers can cook meals, clean the house, and drive your parents around. If needed, caregivers can help your parents complete them instead of taking over and doing them for them.

The level of services needed depends on your parents’ abilities. They may be able to do some of the IADLs or ADLs on their own, so they’ll only need a few elderly care services. They may need higher levels of care, which means daily elderly care for hours at a time. Either way, all it takes to make arrangements is one phone call.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Boynton Beach, FL, or the surrounding areas, please give us a call at (561) 465-5920

What Might Help Your Senior in an Anxiety Attack?

Anxiety attacks are not fun and if your senior is new to anxiety, they can be terrifying for her. Talk to your senior’s doctor first to rule out medical causes for your senior’s anxiety and then try some of these ideas when she’s in the midst of an anxiety attack. Eventually you’ll have a toolkit put together of techniques that usually work for her that you can both turn to when needed.

Look at Her Diet

Lots of what goes on in the human body is helped by proper nutrition. This sounds like a catch-all approach, but what you’re trying to do is to make sure that your senior’s brain and body are nutritionally supported. If that helps with anxiety, too, then that’s a bonus. Focus on a whole-foods diet whenever possible.

Take Breaks

When your elderly family member first starts to feel anxiety creeping in, encourage her to take a quick break from whatever she’s doing. The anxiety may not have anything to do with the activity she’s engaged in, but walking away, going outside, or simply changing her scenery can all help her to interrupt whatever thought patterns were taking her down the road to anxiety.

Use Different Techniques to Bring Her Back

There are lots of little techniques that you and your senior can try to help her to anchor outside of anxiety. One easy one involves square breathing, which is simply breathing in for the count of four, holding for the count of four, exhaling for the count of four, and holding for the count of four before breathing again. This works because it slows her breathing down. Or you might try having her find red items in the room, like a variation on “I Spy.” Counting to 10 can also help.

Try to Learn Her Triggers

When your elderly family member is more familiar with her triggers, she can better avoid them whenever possible. This may involve journaling out what she’s feeling when she’s in the midst of anxiety so that she can dig a little bit deeper. It’s not something that she may find the answer to right away, but as she keeps looking, she’ll find more answers.

If being home alone is one of your senior’s most frequent anxiety triggers, then home care providers might be a good fit. They can offer companionship to your senior and help her to feel less anxious.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Elderly Care in Palm Beach, FL, or the surrounding areas, please give us a call at (561) 465-5920

(561) 465-5920