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Iris Waichler

Taking care of aging parents with Iris Waichler

In episode 53 of Rock Your Retirement, our guest was Iris Waichler, MSW, LCSW. You can listen to the show by clicking the little arrow button.

Iris Waichler, MSW, LCSW has been a well-known patient advocate and licensed clinical social worker for the last 40 years. She has worked with patients and families who have experienced catastrophic illnesses like strokes, cancer, amputations, and head injuries. She also worked with people battling infertility. Ms. Waichler is an author and a Mom’s Choice Gold Award Winner. She was also the winner of the (NAPPA) Gold Award for best book of the year, and winner of the finalist award for Foreword Magazine 2007 non-fiction Book of the Year. Her newest book, “Role Reversal, Taking Care of Yourself and Your Aging Parents” arrived on bookshelves August 2016.

So many people are taking care of aging parents and still have children of their own living at home. This is the “Sandwich Generation”

Iris was involved of taking care of both of her aging parents. She tells a story about noticing her father was wearing two watches while at a doctor’s visit. This small detail leads to an emergency surgery for a hemorrhage in his brain.

Things to look for when visiting an aging parent or loved one:

  1. Demeanor
  2. Does their personal care seem to be getting worse?
  3. How are they eating?
  4. Condition of their home – Is the house in disarray?
  5. Are they showing any signs of memory loss?
  6. Do you see any physical symptoms or balance issues?
  7. Have there been changes in social behavior?
  8. Do you see changes in emotional status?
  9. Are there scratches and dents in their car?

How to bring up the difficult conversations that go along with taking care of aging parents.

  • Driving and are they safe to continue to drive?
  • Wills
  • Advance directives
  • Wishes upon death
  • Power of attorneys
  • Staying in their own home and whether or not is safe.

Iris also tells us about Geriatric Care managers. They can help with putting a game plan in place if it gets to be too overwhelming.

Iris’s Books: 

Role Reversal: How to Take Care of Yourself and Your Aging Parents
Riding the Infertility Roller Coaster: A Guide to Educate & Inspire

Contact information for Iris:  Website iriswaichler.wpengine.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RoleReversal1/

Get the 5 Things You Need to Know About Care Giving for Your Aging Parents HERE.