If you’ve been struggling to decide whether home care is the best way to help you or your loved one live a more comfortable life, you know that there are many factors to consider. Below are 10 important questions to ask yourself to help determine if home care is right for your situation.
1. What kind of care is needed?
What is it that a home caregiver will need to help with? Is help needed with personal care, housekeeping or do you or your loved one simply need someone to provide companionship? Do you need more extensive medical care? Home care is a great option for those who need assistance with chores like daily tasks and basic medical care, but for adults who need around the clock care, an assisted living or supportive living facility may be a more suitable option.
2. Is leaving home difficult for you or your loved one?
If driving or taking public transportation is too difficult, home caregivers may be able to provide assistance with both driving you or your loved one, as well as running errands such as grocery shopping.
3. How often can you, a family member or friend provide care to your loved one?
The ability of you or another person to provide care will likely sway your decision to choose home care. Home care is often a great choice for those who can provide some care to loved ones, but are unable to act as a full-time caregiver.
4. Where do you or your loved one wish to live?
If you are planning care for a loved one, a seemingly obvious yet sometimes overlooked question is “where do they prefer to live?” Many people have a strong preference toward staying in their own homes, where they can be near the things and people they have grown accustom to. For seniors who need some day-to-day assistance or companionship, home care is a great option. However, some older adults may require more care and supervision than can be provided by home caregivers. While keeping your loved one’s preference in mind, be sure to think realistically about where they will be safest: at home with regular visits from a home caregiver, or in an assisted living facility with constant access to care.
5. Do you or your loved ones forget to take medication, pay bills or fail to maintain personal hygiene?
Lapses in memory can cause many issues, including additional and serious medical problems. A home caregiver can help make sure that the correct medication is taken according to schedule, bills are paid in time and that hygiene is maintained.
6. Is caring for your loved one becoming stressful or causing you to put your life on hold?
If caring for your loved one is becoming difficult, time consuming and stressful, home care can alleviate much of the burden you currently feel. For family caregivers currently caring for a loved one, home care can allow you to spend quality time with your family, instead of spending it as a caretaker.
7. Have you or a loved one recently suffered from a fall?
Falls can be incredibly dangerous for older adults, especially those that live alone. If a fall or suspected fall has occurred recently, regular home care visits can help reassure you that someone will be present or on their way soon in case of an event.
8. Are you or your loved one losing weight?
An older adult may stop preparing meals or eating regularly, resulting in noticeable weight loss. Home care providers can prepare meals and ensure that you or your loved one is receiving the proper nutrients required to remain healthy.
9. Have you or your loved one become socially withdrawn?
Social isolation is often an issue for older adults who live on their own. Home caregivers can provide much needed companionship for those who are otherwise unable or unwilling to socialize with family and friends.
10. Have you or your loved one recently undergone surgery?
If there has been a recent surgery, it is likely that you or your loved one needs time to fully recover and get back to their daily routine. In these instances, home care is a great option: caregivers can follow a care plan to keep your health on-track for a full recovery, while also helping to maintain your home, pay bills and assist with errands. If surgery is followed by a rehabilitation program, home caregivers can assist in making sure you stick to your rehab care plan so you can recover as quickly and safely as possible.
If you are ready to find a home care provider, be sure to carefully consider your options. Make note of what type of organization is running home care services. Some are for-profit institutions which prioritize profit; some, like Methodist Senior Home Care, are non-profits that prioritize high quality care of our seniors.
If you believe that you or your loved one may be ready for home care, or would like to talk to someone to help decide if home care is the best option, please give us a call at Methodist Senior Home Care at 773-769-5270.