Knowing When It’s Time to Hire In-Home Senior Care
While many seniors are happy to live independently and take good care of their health and daily needs, there comes a time in the aging process when physical and cognitive changes may impact their self-reliant lifestyle. However, a decline in functional abilities does not mean a senior needs to transition to assisted living. In some cases, in-home care can support them to continue living comfortably in their own homes.
Deciding to pursue in-home care can be challenging, as it may feel like defeat. However, it’s important to remember that in-home care services are value-adding resources that can be pursued as often or as little as you need. These senior care services are designed to accommodate your needs in a way that feels comfortable and beneficial to you or your loved one. When in-home care becomes a conversation in your family, here are several factors to consider when making your final decision.
A Change in Physical Abilities
When you or a loved one experiences a decline in physical abilities, it may indicate that in-home senior care is the next step. This may become apparent when a once tidy house falls behind on cleanliness, or when simple tasks such as bills and mail are piling up on the counter, or garbage needs to be taken to the curb.
While these are not major dangers, they are a sign that physical function is not at the level it once was, and this typically becomes more noticeable with time, leading to more harmful outcomes. With time these small changes can result in neglecting more important daily tasks or being unable to handle necessary matters that contribute to safety and well-being.
Noticeable Cognitive Decline
Cognitive decline is a common occurrence that happens as we age. The symptoms of cognitive decline may vary from one individual to the next, including memory loss, confusion, impaired judgment, challenges with daily activities, and changes in personality. These cognitive issues may not be enough to warrant 24/7 monitoring, but they do demand additional help.
For instance, a senior with memory loss may forget to take their essential daily medications, which can be detrimental to their health. They may experience confusion and disorientation, adding struggle to simple tasks around the home. Furthermore, they may experience heightened anxiety that prohibits them from completing vital tasks. All of these problems can be addressed by adding in-home care support.
A Decline in Personal Hygiene
When a senior requires in-home care assistance, you may notice that they are not caring for their hygiene needs as they once did. This may come in the form of wearing dirty clothes repeatedly or not brushing their hair or teeth daily. In other cases, they may have trouble bathing or fear falling while in the shower or bath, leading them to avoid grooming needs to preserve their safety.
Hygiene is a critical part of overall health and well-being. When these needs are unmet, it’s time to consider pursuing in-home care. An in-home senior care specialist can assist with daily hygiene and grooming needs, offering support and encouragement to ensure seniors are safe while completing tasks.
New or Progressing Health Conditions
Whether a senior has a pre-existing condition that has gotten worse or was recently diagnosed with a health condition, in-home care can help. An in-home care provider can assist with monitoring a senior with health concerns and aid with daily medications and transportation to doctor’s appointments.
In-home care for a senior navigating an illness or health condition can grant the senior the independence they need while ensuring they are safe and their health demands are met. This helps deter further medical issues and keeps a senior living happily in the comfort of their own home.
In some cases, an at-home senior care professional is needed to reduce stress and combat the burnout of a senior’s current caregiver. This is typically a family member or loved one who has taken on the responsibility of caring for their elderly family member. There is a lot that goes into being a caregiver. It is one of the most selfless jobs; however, it comes with its fair share of challenges that may increase with the decline of a senior’s physical or mental functions.
Between managing your schedule, the schedule of your elderly loved one, and all of their needs while trying to balance your own needs and responsibilities, it is normal to experience caregiver burnout. It’s important not to be hard on yourself. Instead, reach out for additional support and assistance through a reputable in-home caregiver who can take on some senior care responsibilities to allow you to focus on your needs while remaining active in your loved one’s care plan.
How to Discuss In-Home Care With a Loved One
If you’ve noticed the signs that it may be time to consider in-home care for a loved one, it’s important to approach the conversation with compassion and support. This is a time-sensitive matter, and it’s essential to bring it up as soon as you can to avoid a crisis. However, it may be met with apprehension, as many seniors try to avoid forfeiting any level of independence. Here are several ways to address the situation.
Make Your Loved One an Active Part of the Decision
The best way to bring up in-home care is to gently begin the conversation with some of the signs you’ve noticed, followed by asking your loved one how they feel and if they have noticed any changes. If your loved one does not see an issue, give them clear examples to support your concerns.
Bring up the positives of in-home care and how it can benefit your loved one, and list the reasons why. Mention shared advantages for you and your loved one, and explain how these resources can significantly contribute to everyone’s quality of life. Remember that you are speaking with an adult and respect their input and opinions.
Speak With an Authority Figure
Sometimes, speaking with your loved one about this decision may be challenging, and they may not be open to listening to you. If this is the case, and you are concerned for their safety and well-being, it may be beneficial to bring in an authority figure, such as their primary physician or hospital social worker to weigh in on the decision.
Share your concerns with their doctor and ask for help reinforcing the idea of in-home care for your loved one. Your loved one may be more willing to accept that it’s time to get extra hands around the house when they hear it from a professional or outside source.
Compassionate In-Home Senior Care
When you and your loved one have decided that in-home senior care is the next step for your family, the professional caregivers at Placita In Home Care are here to accommodate you. As leaders in senior care, we offer an array of in-home care services to fit varying needs. Contact our friendly experts today to discuss your loved one’s care needs and schedule a consultation with our compassionate team.