BY JAYNE STEWART
Do you have an elderly loved one who is showing signs of declining health, dementia or a need for assistance with activities of daily living? When those symptoms start to appear, the family panics. The first thing they think of is a nursing home, or at least a “place” to put Mom so she’ll be safe.
Uprooting an elderly person from the home they love and moving them into a small, unfamiliar room surrounded by people they don’t know isn’t always the best solution.
Let’s look at some of the benefits of home care for seniors. There are numerous advantages of taking care of the elderly at home. Personal comfort in a familiar environment, peace of mind for both the elderly person and their family, and cost effectiveness are just a few reasons to consider home care for your loved one.
What are the advantages of in-home care?
The most important advantage is familiarity. Your loved one has probably lived in the same home for years. They know where everything is, they have a favorite chair, they know the neighbors, they may love to garden, go for walks, or maybe they have a beloved pet.
Most of those things will be left behind when a person enters a nursing home. You may be able to keep your loved one in the home they know and love and still provide the supervision they need if you take advantage of the benefits of home care. Mom will still be able to do the things she loves to do, under the watchful guidance of a trained caregiver.
Your mom may need assistance with bathing or reminders to take medications. Maybe she needs someone to help her with meal preparation or grocery shopping. Those needs can be met in her own home.
Home health agencies and their employees know the benefits of the elderly living at home and their goal is to help make it work. When you seek the services of a home care provider, the plan of care will be fine tuned to meet your loved one’s needs. If your elderly loved one needs non-medical help, skilled nursing services, physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy or companionship, you can access all those services through home health and keep mom in her home.
Ask the Question:
The next time you have a family gathering, ask elderly family members what their preference would be if asked to choose between a nursing facility staying in their own home. I think we all know the answer to that question. If given the choice, most people will choose to stay in their home.
If your parent is beginning to show the normal signs of aging and begins to decline mentally, physically or perhaps both, there are options available to you. Check out a few different agencies and compare those to a nursing home. In most cases a person can remain at home with the proper family supports in place and the service of a reputable home health care agency.