Last week I had a minor accident. I tripped over a step and face planted into the sidewalk. I escaped with a few scrapes and bruises, which are healing nicely. More serious was the damage to my glasses, which were smashed beyond repair. Without a backup pair, other than my prescription sunglasses, I had trouble seeing my computer screen for a few days, and was very reluctant to drive at night, which is a big issue when night starts at 4:30 in the afternoon.
Fortunately, though I needed a new prescription before I could replace my glasses, I was able to get an appointment with an ophthalmologist within a few days, and immediately ordered not one, but two new pairs of glasses. If I ever break my glasses beyond repair again, I’ll be prepared for it.
Family caregivers need to plan for disasters, large and small, because the people that they care for depend on them no matter what else happens. You can find information on how to prepare for major emergencies at emergency.cdc.gov or www.ready.gov.
Planning for smaller, more personal, emergencies may seem less urgent, but is just as important because the small disasters are likely to happen much more often. Do you have a backup caregiver ready in case you are suddenly unable to provide care to your loved ones? Do they have the information they need to do the job? It’s worth giving these questions some thought in advance so you don’t have to worry that your cared-fors will be left without care if you get sick or injured...or lose your glasses and can’t drive at night.