Parenting Our Parents in the Time of COVID-19

How do you keep your parents safe? What safety precautions have you asked them to take? 😷

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We can’t deny that the COVID-19 outbreak poses health risks for everyone, but data and studies have shown that the elderly and those with underlying health issues might be more vulnerable to it.

So obviously, the next concern for xennials, millennials, and everyone else around this age group, is to protect the baby boomers, or our parents and even grandparents. But trying to get them to stay put at home or practice social distancing is almost akin to karma for that time we sneaked out when they told us no. Short of locking them up at home, how do we keep our parents safe from the coronavirus?

What other precautions can the elderly take in the time of COVID-19?

Aside from regularly washing hands and practicing social distancing, here are a few other ways that the elderly should consider to protect themselves:

  • Think twice about visitors. Especially if the family member is sick or had a recent trip. Meetups are good but not at this time.
  • Caregivers should take care of themselves as well. Designated caregivers should practice the necessary precautions as well, especially if they are responsible for groceries and other errands. Mainly because they couldn’t afford to get the virus and pass it onto the elderly. At the same time, families should have a backup plan in case the primary caregiver gets sick. Once the primary caregiver exhibits any symptom or comes down with something, get him to self-isolate ASAP and assign another caregiver accordingly.
  • Ensure that they have enough supplies — food and medicines in their home for 2 weeks or more. Families can also consider using online grocery deliveries to procure needed supplies. Just be sure to book a few days in advance as such services are in demand at this time.

What happens if they have a medical checkup coming up?

If your parent has a scheduled medical appointment for a non-COVID-19 related health issue, then it’s best to call his doctor ahead instead of going to his clinic at the time of the appointment. Ask his doctor if it’s ok to postpone the appointment and check with him as well what needs to be done in case a health emergency arises. Doing so will ensure that he’s not exposed to the virus and wouldn’t add to the congestion in hospitals.

How can I stay connected with my parents during the community quarantine?

If you don’t live with your parents and couldn’t visit them easily because of the prevailing quarantine, you can opt to say connected via phone or video calls (try Facebook Messenger and Google Hangouts among others). Text messaging a few times each day is also ok. It’s also best to ensure that they don’t feel isolated or lonely during the quarantine.

Remember, times such as this are difficult for everyone, and we have different ways of coping. So it’s best to be kind and understanding, while also practicing the necessary precautions to keep our loved ones safe and healthy.

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