Dealing with Bereavement for the Elderly

Dealing with Bereavement for the Elderly

Top Tips on Dealing with Bereavement for the Elderly

Bereavement is something that affects us all at some point. If one of your elderly parents dies, leaving the other alone, this will undoubtedly have an effect on them. This can be especially distressing for them if the death was sudden, and it can often result in a huge adjustment for the surviving partner.

They may have spent most of their lives together and shared responsibilities, and now they may have to take on new tasks and develop new routines at the same time as coping with their loss.

Often it is difficult to know what you can do to help them in the best way, so here is a guide to steps you could take.

Provide them with Company

Often the most important thing is to simply provide your parent with company. They may be feeling incredibly lonely, and they may simply want someone to listen to them, to hear their thoughts and feelings, to express their emotions and come to terms with their loss. Of course, they may prefer not to talk about it, but make sure they know you are there for them.

Help them to Get Organised

One of the biggest changes in their life could be that they need to take on tasks that their partner previously did. Helping them to stay organised and on top of things can therefore be very important.

Write a list of the things they need to do such as bills to pay, chores to carry out and appointments to make. Help them to create a schedule, and then provide them with assistance, especially in the early days of being alone where even simple tasks may be difficult. This will be especially important for tasks they may not have done before, such as paying the bills.

Hire a Care Assistant

Care workers do not always provide live-in care. In fact, our care assistants at Prestige Nursing + Care may pop around for a few hours to help with certain tasks. Your parent does not have to be ill to use the services of a care worker, and you may simply want to arrange some extra help and companionship for them for a few months following the death of a loved one, so consider this as an option.

Look Out for Warning Signs

Bereavement can affect people differently. Grief can sometimes lead to anxiety and depression, and you may also notice that your parent is not eating properly. Look out for signs that they may need to see a doctor, and book an appointment with their GP if you are worried. A doctor may prescribe medication to help, or they may refer them for counselling.

Encourage Social Activities

You may want to encourage your parent to take up some activities where they meet new people and make friends. Would they like to take up an activity they used to do in the past? Or would they like to learn something new? Perhaps they could join a club and meet some new people. Volunteering can also be a good way to meet people and have something to do each day.

Consider Getting a Pet

A pet can provide an excellent form of companionship. Bring up the idea to your parent and see if they like the thought of getting a cat or a dog because this can sometimes help to reduce the loneliness they may be suffering. Just remember that pets bring increased responsibility, so make sure your parent is able to look after it or be prepared to help out yourself.

Help Your Parent to Deal with their Loss

Helping an elderly parent to cope with bereavement can be a challenge, especially as you too may also be grieving your loss. Keep these tips in mind and always remember that help is at hand in the form of professional care if you need it.

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Jobs FAQs

What shifts or rotas are available for professional carers?

Our branches have a wide variety of hours and rotas which means it’s possible to find shifts that fit in with your life situation, whether you want a full time role or are just looking for a few hours a week. All that we ask is that you commit to the hours you can do two weeks in advance.

Do I need care experience to join?

Six months’ professional care experience is ideal - such as a domiciliary carer, care assistant, homecare worker, support worker or healthcare assistant. However, if you are new to care some branches do offer training leading to care certificates, so please contact the recruitment team to discuss on 0808 239 9716.

Do I need a driving licence?

A full clean driving is required for some roles, but not all. Job roles normally state if a driving licence is required, but if you are unsure then please contact the recruitment team on 0808 239 9716.

What pre-employment checks do you do?

To join Prestige Nursing & Care as a professional carer you will be required to apply for a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check, unless you are registered with the update service.

We can help you apply via your local branch. When you work with children and vulnerable adults a DBS check is a legal requirement. Find out more about DBS checks:

We also require two professional references, one of which should be your current or most recent employer.

Finally, you will be required to provide proof of eligibility to work in the UK, NI number, ID and proof of address. Your recruiter will talk you through all requirements and support you all the way.

What training do I need to complete before starting work?

You will need to complete both online e-learning modules and virtual training via Microsoft Teams. This is very flexible and can be completed from home as long as you have a compatible device. Find out more about the training we offer.

Is the training free?

Yes, the training is completely free.

Do you offer regular patterns of work?

Yes, our branches offer a wide variety of hours and shift patterns.

Will I be employed by Prestige Nursing & Care?

You would become a member of our team with a contract for services. You would be eligible for things like SSP and holiday, as well as a NEST workplace pension.

How old do you have to be to work as a carer?

You need to be 18 years old to join our care team and there is no upper age limit.

How often will I get paid?

We pay all our professional carers weekly.