Monkeys may be known for their hyperactive personalities, but there is one thing that humans should learn from our primate friends: the way they take care of their own.
You may have seen the way monkeys pick fleas off each other’s backs. These grooming sessions are about more than just hygiene — they are a social gathering, akin to having dinner with the family on weekends. It’s a chance for everybody to get together.
As the Year of the Monkey approaches, perhaps it is a good idea to adopt this special trait. We don’t mean you should pick fleas off each other’s hair, of course! As humans, we can take care of our loved ones through other means.
Here are some ideas:
1. Medication Safety
It is not uncommon for elderly members of the family to take multiple medications on a daily basis. It can be easy to get confused about when to take a certain medication and how much to take at any one time. Simplify this process by getting a large, easy-to-read weekly pillbox, or even setting alarms to notify them throughout the day.
2. Physical Activities
Family gatherings do not always have to be about eating! Encourage family members to lead an active lifestyle, which can improve health, strength and mood in the long run. Start off slow with short walks around the neighbourhood, and, if they are up for it, progress to trekking nearby nature trails. Just to be on the safe side, seek a doctor’s approval before engaging in physical activities with elderly members of the family.
Keeping an eye on your loved one’s health is one thing, but checking their financial situation, especially in retirement, is just as important. Take some time to sit down with your loved ones to chat about their retirement plans, and if they have enough to last them through their retirement. If need be, look up endowment plans to make sure they can maintain their desired standard of living in retirement.
Would you prefer a modest or comfortable retirement? And how much would either cost? You might be surprised what you can afford. Play with the retirement calculator to find out how much it costs you to retire in Singapore. And remember: it is always best to start early.
4. Good Nutrition
Encourage your loved ones to adopt a healthy diet. Or, if you have the time, help them pick out healthier food options by joining them on their grocery runs. Every once in a while, take a peek into their cabinets or refrigerators to make sure that they are not eating anything that has gone bad or past its expiry date.
5. Medical Care
Schedule health screenings for your loved ones and, even better, accompany them to their medical appointments and take detailed notes. That way, you can keep tabs on the necessary treatment and medication, as well as bringing up any lingering questions or concerns that you may have. Keeping a list of symptoms will also help doctors provide better, more accurate diagnoses.