So your parents are getting older, say they are managing fine but phone you every day for help? Your brother says he lives too far away to do anything? They need to downsize but the house is full of junk? Trips to your parents with your young children are driving you crazy? John Oakstone combines his experience of looking after his two elderly parents in their last years with his day job as a doctor to produce a pithy but optimistic guide to looking after your parents in their final years.
1: Downhill reluctantly
2: Money matters
3: Working as a team
4: Help outside hospital, Formal and informal
5 : Interacting with Healthcare professionals
Appendix 1 Grades of Doctors, Nurses and Admin staff
6: Kids and elderly grandparents
7: Cognitive Impairment
8: Moving out of the family home
9: Nursing homes and Residential homes
10: Ceilings of treatment
Appendix 2 End of life care guidance example
11: The process of dying
12: Registering the death and arranging a funeral
as I mentioned my sis downloaded a copy of your book. She said it was very succinct and informative and your sensitivity came through. It made her remember - being, by her own admission, a bit Stasi in her constant checking on and fretting about Mum, that there is a person with feelings and wished still there. There can be a tendency to take over, can't there, and she said reading your book pulled her up a bit. We've had some more heart to heart conversations between us and addressed many elephants in rooms as a result of reading your guide. It's been a real help, if not only to get siblings reading from the same page (no pun).
Recent review: franklyreading on Instagram
COVID-19 is unlike anything the majority of us have ever experienced. These are unprecedented and scary times, which have forced many of us far too early and far too suddenly to confront our own mortality and that of the people we love; but for those of us who are lucky enough to emerge from all of this with our families safe and well, there will come a day when we have to confront that reality again.
John Oakstone is the pen name of an A&E doctor who draws on personal experience of caring for elderly parents in their twilight years, as well as experience with elderly patients in clinical settings, to offer simple, practical tips on everything from innovative handbag solutions for the mother who constantly forgets which pocket she puts things in*, to juggling both young children and elderly parents on days out, to finding the right nursing home when the time comes. There is clear, honest yet sensitive information about planning care, ceilings of treatment, and how the process of dying actually unfolds. There are also some excellent tips on navigating the NHS on behalf of a confused and/or reluctant parent and effectively dealing with healthcare professionals. Most poignant, and perhaps most important, however, are the tips on staying sane, having a laugh in spite of it all, and making special memories in those final few years.