Is It Time for Senior Home Care?
Do you have a long-term care plan in place for yourself or your senior parents? If not, now is the time to get started. Even though many seniors want to age-in-place at home or in their communities, most families don’t have a plan for adding senior home care to the mix.
Many families ask the question, “Is it time for senior home care?” Truthfully, it can be difficult to pinpoint as situations and personal circumstances change. The best thing you can do is be prepared. And that can start with Affordable Senior Home Care.
Signs It May Be Time for Senior Home Care
Some indications can help you answer whether it is time for senior home care. Instead of waiting for the decision to be made for you in case of an emergency or crisis, we recommend enlisting help early and in small doses, based on the following signs.
Has there been a string of “little accidents,” or have you noticed an increasing number of dings, dents, or scratches on your parent’s car? Or does your spouse or parent seem less inclined to drive their vehicle, forgoing routine outings and social gatherings?
The minute a senior is no longer safe to drive or needs to turn in the keys, securing transportation services is essential. Social engagement is key to senior emotional wellbeing. It is important to avoid seniors being “trapped at home” if they are physically capable of getting out and about. The inability to drive safely also diminishes a senior’s access to fresh, healthy foods.
Sparse Refrigerators and Cupboards
That brings us to another “red flag” indicating seniors need help. Take a peek into their refrigerator and pantry to see what’s there. If you find they’re pretty bare, contain only a small range of processed foods, or you notice current food options look moldy, dried out, or expired, the senior probably needs help with shopping and meal preparation.
Shopping and cooking are hard work, and that leaves seniors at risk for malnourishment. The Administration for Community Living (ACL) estimates that as many as 50% of seniors in the United States are malnourished. According to the ACL, “Some [seniors] may not have the stamina to cook a meal or may not want to cook because they are feeling down. Others may not eat because they do not feel well enough to eat.”
Securing weekly grocery runs or hiring a senior care agency to bring regular, easy-to-heat meals and snacks specially formulated to meet your loved one’s dietary restrictions is essential to keeping them nourished, strong, and healthy.
A Decline in Personal and/or Household Hygiene
Similarly, it takes a fair amount of energy, mobile stability, and stamina to keep ourselves regularly bathed and groomed, do laundry, or clean the house. Hiring senior caregivers to come in once a week or more is a great way to ensure seniors live in a neat, clean, and organized (accessible) environment, with access to clean clothes and linens.
We can also provide personal care services that include bathing, dressing, and grooming seniors, so they look and feel their best each day. These regular “wellness checks” also mean family members remain current with any notable changes or issues that require increased or amended home care services.
Not Participating in Social Outings or Activities
Loneliness is a senior epidemic, and it leaves seniors more prone to depression, anxiety, low self-worth, or a lack of will to live. Don’t fall for seniors’ excuses as to why they no longer attend their favorite clubs, card games, restaurant outings, church groups, etc.
There are almost always underlying reasons seniors cease getting out of the house or spending time with friends. Reasons include the inability to drive safely and embarrassment about personal hygiene or incontinence issues. Malnourishment-related weight loss could mean stylish clothes no longer fit.
Dig deeper to investigate whether the simple addition of transportation support or enlisting the help of a companion to help them get ready would get them back on track again.
Falls or Balance/Stability Issues
Falls are a leading reason seniors are forced to transition from their homes to nursing care or hospitals and into acute care rehabilitation facilities. Unfortunately, this puts them at risk for rapid physical and mental decline. Providing in-home support ahead of the time helps seniors regain their energy once they are socially engaged, fed well, and able to conserve energy by not worrying about household chores and errands.
Memory Lapses or Signs of Cognitive Decline
Cognitive decline resulting in memory lapses is a common age-related experience. Memory loss creates a higher risk for forgetting to take essential medication(s), resulting in a snowball effect that causes seniors’ overall health to plummet.
Memory loss also compromises seniors in other ways, making them more vulnerable to getting lost in their neighborhoods, lapsed bill payments, or forgetting to eat meals. But by enlisting the help of senior home care, seniors can live vibrant, independent lives.
Types of Senior Home Care
Aging-in-place safely, securely, and independently requires the support of others. There is a point at which any senior needs extra help to perform the day-to-day tasks, including:
- Errand running and grocery shopping
- Light housekeeping
- Linen changes and laundry
- Help with dog walking or pet care
- Meal preparation
- Personal care (including bathing, dressing, grooming, and hygiene support)
If help isn’t brought in at the right time, age-related decline happens so quickly that an accident or medical incident forces a family’s hand. Unfortunately, this scenario often places unwilling seniors into the nursing home settings they passionately want to avoid.
Time for Senior Home Care? Let Affordable Senior Home Care Help
At Affordable Senior Home Care, our focus is on serving seniors and those in need. We can help answer the question, “Is it time for senior home care?” In-home senior care is available by the hour, part-time, overnight, or on a live-in basis, and services are always tailored to the client’s needs.
The best way to prepare is scheduling in-home assessments with local, senior caregiving agencies before help is needed. That way, families have the opportunity to learn more about senior care services, pricing, and recommendations. Contact Affordable Senior Care Services to determine whether it’s time to enlist our help and to learn more about your options.