Is It Time for Home Care?
Every family must face the question at some point: What’s the best way to care for our elderly relatives?
There are many factors to consider, of course, such as your loved one’s health needs, available financial resources, and where the various family members live. There are many options for care as well, including nursing homes, assisted-living facilities, and adult family homes.
When possible, however, many families are considering in-home care.
According to AARP, 82 percent of people say that they would prefer to stay in their homes as long as possible. This comes as no surprise. Home is obviously the most familiar and comfortable place to be, especially when a person isn’t feeling their best. And being in one’s home offers more freedom, independence and dignity than a community living situation allows.
Studies by the National Association for Home Care & Hospice have confirmed that in many cases home care is a cost-effective service that reinforces and supplements care provided by family and friends, while also allowing people to take an active role in their own care, which promotes healing and faster recovery.
Ten Questions To Help Decide
So, how do you know when it’s time for home care for your loved one? Here are 10 questions that could help you decide.
- Has there been a recent emotional or medical crisis?
- Are pills left over or being used too quickly?
- Does your loved one require assistance walking?
- Is he or she becoming more forgetful?
- Are there signs of burnt pans on the stove or scorch marks on pot holders, dish towels, etc.?
- Is his or her hearing or vision affecting their ability to function?
- Is he or she unable to run errands or travel to appointments alone?
- Is routine house cleaning being ignored?
- Have social activities become less frequent or stopped altogether?
- Have there been recent falls?
If the answer to any of these is “yes,” it may be time to consider in-home care. Agencies such as Addus HomeCare provide in-home support, including personal care and other assistance with “Activities of Daily Living.” These typically include:
- Personal Care (bathing, dressing and grooming)
- Meal Planning and Preparation
- Household Chores (light housekeeping and laundry)
- Medication Reminders
- Transportation (appointments, shopping and errands)
In addition to providing companionship and support, professional home care aides will also advocate for your loved one by observing and reporting Changes in Condition – anything that is noticeably different in their behavior, appearance or living situation, from one visit to the next. This can help prevent problems that could affect their ability to stay in their home.
by: Cindy Barnett, Director of Addus Homecare – Coeur d’Alene
Cindy Barnett is the Director of Addus Homecare in Coeur d’Alene; providing quality In-Home Care to those in need. Cindy has a degree in Psychology and a minor in health promotions from Weber State University. Over the last 30 years she has worked with a range of age groups; many who suffer with depression. Her passion is to help others live a better quality of life.