Helping a Senior Quit Smoking to Protect Their HeartUnderstanding the risk factors associated with heart attack is a vital part of protecting your parent’s health and well-being. Through this understanding you can adjust your care routine to reduce these risks and protect your parent from potentially serious health consequences. One particularly pressing risk factor for heart health, as well as health throughout the rest of the body, is smoking. Using tobacco has no health benefits, but presents a wide range of risks and challenges. Helping your parent to quit can dramatically reduce the chances that your parent will experience a heart attack and other health problems.

Use these tips to help your parent quit smoking as part of their efforts to protect their health and their heart as they age in place:

  • Talk to their doctor with your parent and have the doctor express the importance of not smoking. Hearing it from a doctor can emphasize this importance and make your parent more receptive to the chance. This also gives you the opportunity to get recommendations for how to help your parent quit safely.
  • Acknowledge to your parent that this process will be difficult and that they will go through emotional challenges as they go through it. Just acknowledging this to your parent can help them to better cope with the emotional difficulties as it will help them feel supported and not alone.
  • Focus on other healthy lifestyle choices such as eating a healthy, balanced diet, staying well-hydrated, getting enough rest, and staying physically active. These will keep the body healthier and help your parent to cope with the effects of quitting.
  • Find healthy coping mechanisms and replacement behaviors. Behaviors such as taking a walk or picking up a knitting project when they feel a craving can make it easier for your parent to work through them. Each craving that they get through makes it easier to handle the next and brings them closer to feeling completely confident about quitting for life.

Being a family caregiver means that you will make a wide variety of important decisions for your elderly parent. One of the most beneficial may be to start home care for them. As a caregiver you may feel as though you need to handle everything for your parent on your own. This, however, is not the case. Relying on the professional, highly personalized services of a home care provider can be a fantastic way to support and boost the quality of life, health, and well-being of your aging parent throughout their later years. This care provider will not only help your parent to manage their physical needs in the ways that are right for them, but will also provide companionship that can boost their mental and emotional health and well-being. This encourages your parent to stay healthy and active, but also motivated, independent, and fulfilled. As their family caregiver, this can provide tremendous peace of mind and ease your stress throughout the course of your care journey.