Natural Disasters and Aging Parents

Please Share

Natural Disasters and Aging Parents

Emergency checklist

Hurricanes, flooding, wildfires, and earthquakes have all struck families this year. Sometimes your aging parent or other loved one is displaced and adult children must suddenly take them in. If your family member was in a care facility, such as a nursing home or assisted living, you may suddenly face caregiving responsibilities without notice ahead of time. Communication with doctors may be sketchy or cut off when power is out. What should families do?

If you are unexpectedly taking on caregiving for an aging parent because of displacement, whether temporarily or longer term, there are some basics you can consider and do.

  1. If you are able to contact the primary care physician, get a complete list of all medications your parent takes. If your parent has some bottles of pills, compare them with the doctor’s record to be sure you have a complete list and that it is up to date. Order any medications needed. When a vulnerable elder misses doses of essential medication it can quickly lead to a crisis.


  1. If you are unsure of the care routine your parent needs, get a professional evaluation at your home from a geriatric care manager. Care managers, often with nursing or social work backgrounds, can assess your loved one and create a written care plan. The care plan should address your loved one’s physical, social and emotional needs. Recommendations about safety hazards, adjustments, and equipment your loved one needs should be included. The care manager will visit, evaluate and leave you with a written guide as to what needs to be done.


  1. Displacement is traumatic for an older person, just as the sudden responsibility for daily caregiving can be stressful for the family. Encourage your aging parent to talk about it, and ask what might make them feel more comfortable. Your loved one may not want to speak up, feeling that she is being a burden. Offer her your reassurance that you will all get through this difficult transition together.


  1. A care facility where your loved one was living provided structure and opportunities for socialization. Consider whether a local senior center in your community might offer opportunities for making social connections with others and find out if he is willing to give it a try and visit a center. Isolation can be depressing for anyone. Many senior centers have directories of other senior-oriented services available nearby too.


  1. Devote time to yourself when you can. If you can bring in caregivers to help you with tasks for your aging parent, that can give you relief and allow you to go to your job or other activities. Attend to your other important relationships by spending time with them. The sudden addition to your daily lives can stress communication between spouses, partners, and kids still at home. Take breaks.

To learn more about confidently navigating the journey with aging parents, get our book here: The Family Guide to Aging Parents: Answers to Your Legal, Healthcare and Financial Questions and at

By Carolyn L. Rosenblatt, RN, Elder law attorney

Tiny URL for this post:

Please Share
JUST RELEASED “The Family Guide To Aging Parents”
Stack Of CashCheck out our latest website: click HERE to learn more
FREE Report: “One Critical Step You Must Take To Avoid Your Aging Parents Debts”
CLICK on the image Below
Testimonials by our readers
"Thank you for the article on the "grey area". It validated what I am currently going through with my Mother. It is so painful for me to go back and forth with her behavior. I just don't know what to do about the estranged sister who has exploited well over $50K of my mother's savings and my Mothers admitted " lack of "will power" to say no to her." Robert ________________________________ "I do want to thank you for the Webinar you offered. It helped me a great deal as I was facing the need to lead our family in finding a safe living situation for our mother. That information and the other information you offered as downloads gave me much needed guidance when I was feeling tremendous anxiety and uncertainty." Betty
FREE Report: 10 Warning Signs Your Aging Parent Needs Help With Money
Get Quick Tips – Newsletter FREE…. Just CLICK Below
  • What To Do When Your Aging Parent Is No Longer Safe Living Alone But Refuses To Move July 11, 2019
    What To Do When Your Aging Parent Is No Longer Safe Living Alone But Refuses To Move Carolyn Rosenblatt, RN, Elder law attorney, “My mom is not safe by herself but she refuses help!” “My dad can’t manage alone…Read more ›
    Carolyn Rosenblatt
  • Here’s The Newest Utility Bill Scam May 30, 2019
    Carolyn Rosenblatt, RN, Elder law attorney, We live in a county with a high number of older residents. A neighbor recently alerted all in our area to yet another scam she had encountered, targeting the unsuspecting. Here’s how it…Read more ›
    Carolyn Rosenblatt
  • A Remedy For Isolated Aging Parents April 30, 2019
    By Carolyn Rosenblatt, RN, Attorney, The U.S. Census Bureau projects that by 2060, nearly twenty-five percent of Americans will be age 65 and above.  At the same point, the number of people age 85 and older will triple. What will they…Read more ›
    Carolyn Rosenblatt
  • Warn Your Aging Parents About Fake “Social Security” Calls–They’re Scams April 10, 2019
    Carolyn L. Rosenblatt, RN, Elder law attorney, Scams targeting our aging loved ones never seem to stop. Thieves can fool the recipient of a call by showing a “real” number on caller ID with spoofing computer software. That’s a…Read more ›
    Mikol Davis
FREE Report: Mental Wellness Technique For Stress Relief