Senior Home Care: Making a plan for in home senior care. When given the option, most would prefer to stay in their own home. This is where they have made a life, have many fond memories and feel the most comfortable. Find out the four factors that will help you determine the best options for you and your loved one as they age, and how A Medical Alert button can help them age in place safely.
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Four Factors to Help Determine if Aging in Place is a Viable Option for your Loved One.
As our loved ones age, many of us consider whether or not they will be able to continue to live independently or if assistance is needed. The following four factors will help you decide. And how Medical Alert buttons and other safety devices can help them age in place safely.
Factor #1 – Medical
Is your loved one able to manage and administer their own medications? This can be a serious concern if they are living alone. This timed medication pillbox is a great option to ensure your loved one is taking their medications correctly.
Any existing medical conditions should be considered, as they can strongly affect your loved one’s ability to be on their own. This includes chronic illnesses such as Alzheimer’s, COPD or Diabetes, just to name a few. As certain conditions progress, it can make at home care a less viable option as time progresses.
Factor #2 – Physical Condition Of The Home
Ideally, the home where the elderly person wants to remain should be set up for one-floor living, with access to a full bathroom that either is or can be modified for accessibility. Specialized equipment such as hand rails, grab bar and raised toilet seats can (and should) be installed to make things safer, and a Medical Alert or similar systems should be used for emergencies.
You can also use technology such as Amazon Alexa to enable voice prompts, reminder and hands free calling for your loved one.
Factor #3 – Financial
Another very important factor is financial. What resources are available to your aging loved one? Do they have a long term care insurance policy? If so you will want to be clear on what it covers.
It is important to have a plan and a budget to help determine how potentially needed services will be funded. If resources for your loved one are limited, there are other options for services funded by public payers. This can help to ensure your loved one does not encounter service interruption at any point. Read more about Free assistance and resources for the Elderly.
Factor #4 – Support System
Is there a support system in place to help your loved one as needed? If you live out of the area or are working, you may not be able to commit the time needed. In this case, it may be beneficial for your loved one to have other persons or services available to them such as an in home care taker or shuttle service.
Another very important topic is socialization. Socialization can make a world of difference when it comes to support, as depression and worsening of their condition can occur without proper socialization. You may want to look into activities provided by senior centers in their area, places of worship, or neighbors and friends. This could help to keep them engaged and happy as they age in place.
The next step will be to have a conversation with your loved one about potential help when it comes to their care. A great tool to start with is having them complete this Checklist for my Family .
A good strategy is to make a list of “next steps” and to start with less invasive action items such as a shuttle service to help them get to appointments or a medication organizer with timer to assist them in taking needed medications. It could also be something as simple as medical equipment such as a shower chair or grip bar for the shower. This can help to ease them into the idea of additional help.
Signs that Emergency Intervention May be Necessary.
While the ultimate goal is to help your loves one remain independent, it may become clear that more immediate care is needed. Some of these signs could be as follows:
- An Alzheimer’s patient has begun to wander or leave the house unattended
- When a loved one truly cannot be left home alone and there are no other resources in their area.
- If your loved one’s medical condition is no longer manageable and they are no longer able to do so at home.
- Is your loved one a potential harm to themselves or others?
When dealing with an emergency, planning for senior care is the best way to help eliminate or alleviate potential stress. It helps to make the process easier for everyone when the time comes.