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Home for the Holidays: Does My Senior Loved One Need In-Home Care?

With the aroma of comfort meals filling homes and strings of colorful lights hanging to brighten up winter’s dreariness, it’s one of the most wonderful time of the year when family members and friends, both near and far, gather to celebrate the holiday season!


With merriments in full swing, the holidays are an ideal time for becoming reacquainted with senior loved ones. Not only is this a time to share stories, laughter, and memories, the holidays provide an opportunity to notice if cognitive and physical changes in older adults have become increasingly apparent. Although holiday gatherings are usually filled with light-hearted and cheerful conversations, it’s important to talk with them to see how they are really feeling, especially if you see alarming signs in your older friend or family member. Although challenging, remember that discussing in-home care for your older loved ones will ultimately allow them to keep their independence and help them live in the place they love, longer!

When preparing to visit your senior friend or family member, it’s important to pay close attention to their physical and mental health, as well as their living situation. Below are some indicators to help determine if they need household support on a regular basis:

  • Weekly Pill Dispenser is Still Full
  • Expired Medication Bottles
  • Untidy Living Space
  • Declining Personal Grooming and Hygiene
  • Cabinets Aren’t Well Stocked
  • Spoiled Food in Refrigerator
  • Confusion and Forgetfulness
  • Changes in mental status or changes to their personality
  • Neglecting Property (dents/scratches in car, burn or scorch marks on pots or kitchen countertops)
  • Frailty and Unsteadiness
  • Unopened Mail Piling Up
  • Unlocked Doors and Windows
  • Vagueness in answers to questions around recent doctor appointments, preparing meals, etc.
  • Feeling that something is "off" with your aging loved one

Not sure if the signs you noticed in your loved one are concerning, or if there are enough signs to elicit caregiver services? Take our quiz to find out if it's time to get help for your senior friend or family member. Anne McSweeney, LCSW, President, CEU Creations, who has worked primarily with the geriatric population in home health, hospice, and dialysis, collaborated with us to create this simple but important quiz to provide guidance when deciding if it's time to get help for your loved one. Our goal is to provide insight on what kind of care they may need based on your answers!

“It’s critical to take a proactive stance and have difficult conversations about your aging loved one’s changing health early on to plan ahead and ensure their wishes are not only known but also carried out, if possible … Taking initiative in this process helps prevent problems before they start, reduces the risk of unplanned hospital admissions, avoids crisis situations, and empowers your older loved one to manage their own conditions.” Anne McSweeney, LCSW, President, CEU Creations

While this can be an emotional and challenging process for everyone involved, Griswold Home Care can support you with the tools, resources, and care needed to help your loved one live in the place they love, while giving you peace of mind that they are receiving the compassionate care they deserve.

After taking the quiz, make sure to fill out the website form, and someone will be in touch to educate you about home care, discuss your loved one's needs, and answer any questions you may have! Have a safe and happy holiday season!


About Anne McSweeney:
For over 16 years, Anne has been developing cutting-edge, educational trainings for clinicians throughout the country through in-person and online CE trainings. Anne has been a licensed social worker since 1994 and has a unique background in social work and community relations. Prior to finding her niche providing educational trainings, Anne practiced medical social work for over eight years – working primarily with the geriatric population in home health, hospice, and dialysis. The lessons she learned from her patients stay with her to this day and influence every aspect of her work with CEU Creations.
CEU Creations was founded in 2010 by Anne to meet the need for affordable and engaging CE trainings for helping professionals. Their unique business model connects valuable resources with these helping professionals, thus allowing them, to keep costs low for our attendees. Using unconventional and innovative approaches to learning, CEU Creations’ trainings are true experiences with informative and fun content! For more information, visit or call 404-421-6055


The Holiday “warning signs” content, including the text, graphics, images, links, quiz questions, quiz results and other materials are for informational purposes only. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Griswold Home Care, Anne McSweeney, and CEU Creations do not recommend or endorse any specific medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The information provided on is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between patient/site visitor and his/her physician.