For many reasons, many families decide to take care of the elderly at home. However, caring for seniors can be one of the most stressful and challenging jobs someone takes on. Therefore, it is essential that you understand some critical elements in senior home care and how to provide in-home care for the elderly as efficiently as possible.
Determine how much care is needed
Even though taking care of seniors can be one of the most challenging tasks, understanding their needs may help you manage the workload associated with providing care. You can start by finding out what is required either on a one-time basis or regularly. Beginning the conversations, observing their daily activities, or consulting with their doctors is a great way to start.
One of the ways to make this easier is to write down daily, weekly, and monthly care tasks as a list. This may help you understand how much help will be needed at which times of the day. For example, in the morning, they may need help with eating breakfast, bathing, dressing, and consuming their daily intake of prescriptions and other medications. Having a list will give you an overall view of what assistance is required and at which times throughout the day.
Understand how much care and support you can provide to your seniors without risking your health.
After identifying how much care your seniors need, you should determine if you have the ability and the time to handle those by yourself. You may ask yourself whether you can balance your work and social life with the care required. If the answer is 'no', will it be better to have someone to help you with these tasks? You need to be thoughtful and realistic to yourself about how much care you can offer without risking your health or losing the balance in your personal life.
Taking on too much responsibility may not be helpful. In some cases, you can eventually feel stressed out and be unable to take diligent care for anyone.
Instead, you can seek for ways to get the support you may need to maintain a balanced life while providing care for your seniors.
Evaluate the cost associated with home care and maintenance.
Before settling for the in-home care option for the elderly, you must examine the cost associated with in-home care. This involves determining the types of services required for such as home care or health care services, medical or non-medical caregiver, etc. Moreover, if you consider requesting a caregiver, would you hire them directly or through an agency. To reduce the financial burden, you need to make sure that you prepare financially with all your current expenses and budgets. Furthermore, having a contingency plan is necessary in case additional care is required. You can research potential ways to reduce caregiving costs as much as possible such as looking for government benefit programs, and insurance, etc.
Maintenance of your home is also a high cost. Some seniors may have retired, who may not have the necessary income for maintenance and repairs. Moreover, seniors in need of care will do less of the household chores required based on specific medical and physical limitations. Therefore, you need to ask yourself if you can afford these housing costs, including maintenance, utilities, and taxes.
House modifications and accommodations
Many daily activities can become cumbersome and difficult chores that require support. Simple tasks such as lifting a box or climbing the stairs can be a difficult task for seniors. Therefore, if you are considering in-home care for the elderly, you can modify your home and accommodate specific conditions and physical needs to make their life more comfortable and safer. For example, if their movement is constrained or they must use a wheelchair, you can consider letting them live entirely on the ground floor, so they do not need to climb the stairs frequently.
Additionally, with today's technology, you can elevate the senior home care by having a lighting system that is controlled by mobile phones or making windows and doors operate electronically.
Accessibility to health care facilities
As age advances, the accessibility to health care facilities become increasingly significant. For seniors, unexpected incidents and emergencies may occur, and they need to be rushed to the hospitals as quickly as possible. Therefore, it is ideal that the home should be close to qualified and trusted health facilities.