As we age, daily activities that used to be easy may start to develop into difficult tasks that leave us feeling tired and sometimes a little confused or frustrated. Usually around this time in life, the question of whether in-home care is needed comes to the surface. For some it isn’t necessary but for others it may be the best way to continue a happy and fruitful life. In order to help you decide whether in-home care is right for you or a loved one, we’ve complied a short summary of what in-home care is, who provides it and whether you should consider it.
What is In-Home care
Provided within a person’s home, in-home care is supportive care that is given to an individual who needs help with one or more tasks throughout the day and sometimes into the night. Often referred to as domiciliary care, custodial care, social care or simply home care, in-home care can be both formal (provided by a licensed professional) and informal (provided by a family member or friend).
In-home care is usually given for two reasons- to help prevent unneeded hospitalization or to help a loved one live in the comfort and familiar surroundings of their own home. It can also be used as a rehabilitation service for those who have just been released from the hospital due to an invasive surgery or a fall. Generally those receiving care gain assistance in everyday daily activities such as preparing meals, grocery shopping, other errands, eating, showering, following mediation schedules, using the bathroom if necessary, exercising (both inside the home and out) and following a healthy sleep pattern. Sometimes, if needed, home care professionals can stay overnight to continue care.
Home Health Care
Sometimes hired help is used to provide home care assistance. This is usually facilitated by registered nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, home health aides, medical social workers and/or licensed practical nurse to provide a service referred to as ‘home healthcare’. However, it is important to note that these individuals usually only stay a few hours and are not primarily used for all day help and assistance.
For longer periods of time, care assistants are relied upon. These assistants, also known as caregivers, work to help keep a person within their own home with out the need to relocate to a nursing home or assisted living. Not only do these individuals help their client with everyday tasks, but also help to keep the house clean and tidy by doing the dishes, laundry and other basic cleaning tasks. Care assistants sometimes also help with errands such as grocery shopping, doctor visits and picking up prescription refills. Whereas professional nurses and the like can be covered by Medicare programs, care assistants are paid for either through the individual seeking help or by close family members. This type of care is also generally much less expensive than a skilled nursing home and is usually used to delay the need to move to into a skilled nursing facility or assisted living. Community while the right community or location is found.
Sometimes instead of hiring help, family members will choose to oversee any and all care that may be needed at that point of time. This type of care is still considered in-home care, though it is not backed by any type of governmental program. Most of the time there is no compensation plan in place, though one can be arranged between family members if decided upon. Generally family care is given by siblings or children with most care provided a few days a week, sometimes more if needed.
It has been estimated that most in-home care is informal and provided by family members or friends. This type of care can last for a few mere months or sometimes a few years, depending on when and where the loved one chooses to move into assisted living community or needs to be placed into a skilled nursing facility.
A Few of the Benefits of In-Homecare and Senior Living Communities
Caregiving can be a stressful exercise often beyond the capacity of a family member. With family, a career and one’s personal life, is it reasonable to add the more demands and responsibility to be a family caregiver? Certain types of care-giving might also require special training and expertise. Caregivers are trained to anticipate the needs of the elder in their charge and are ever willing to do what it takes to make life simpler. And one can choose the level of care according to the need – from just a few hours a day to round-the-clock companionship and assistance. By hiring Home caregiver the family can have a peace of mind, life of their own and quality care for their loved ones.
When the challenges associated with the aging process require a senior to consider changing his or her living situation, it can be a stressful and confusing time for all involved. However, there are a great number of potential options, and Assisted Living is an increasingly popular choice, because it combines the best aspects of independence, community, services, and affordability. From seniors who require help with a few weekly tasks, to those who need regular medical monitoring and daily assistance, the Assisted Living option can be an appealing one.
When in-home care should begin
Whether or not in-home care is needed is completely based on the individual in question. But for most, care is needed after a fall, surgery, extreme weight loss or mental and/or memory loss. If an individual needs help with activities of daily living (ADL) then the option of home assistance should be considered. These activities include bathing, dressing, eating and sometimes walking to and from a room in the house or out to the mailbox.
Sometimes in extreme cases, such as severe dementia and advanced diabetes, in-home care is not the best option and an assisted living community or skilled nursing facility with the option of 24 hour constant care is the best plan of action. Other times, simply moving the individual into a family members own home can work as well.
At SearchSeniorLiving.com, we are dedicated to helping you and your family ease the search for just the right community, product or service! For more information and to use our Search, Sort and Match ™ tool, please visit our website or call us at 877-243-8073