Although you’ve been assisting your elderly mother with activities of daily living (ADLs) for quite some time, her health just seems to be getting worse. It has now reached a point where you’re worried that mom may need someone constantly in the home to meet her caregiving needs. Deciding if and when to start 24-hour home care, or increase to this level, is never easy. Here are some important things to consider before making your final decision.
Signs that 24-Hour Care is Needed
Whether it is an elderly spouse, parent or grandparent, these are some warning signs that it’s going to take around-the-clock care to keep them in their home:
- Frequent falls or compromised balance, usually due to dementia, a neurological problem or after experiencing an accident
- Recent hospitalization or stay in a rehab facility
- Frequently wandering off on foot or by vehicle
- They get lost, even in familiar places
- Becoming frightened or confused during short absences from loved ones
- Difficulty eating or drinking
- Leaving unattended appliances on
- They are getting malnourished or dehydrated
- They confuse daytime and nighttime, get agitated after sundown or frequently lie awake at night
Left unaddressed these issues can place a senior’s independence at risk. This may mean having to move into an assisted living facility or loved one’s home.
The Benefits of 24-Hour In-Home Care
As a cost-saving alternative to assisted living, 24-hour in-home care provides these benefits to seniors and their families:
Reduced fall risk
Starting with those that have limited mobility, in-home falls and fractures send millions of elderly Americans to emergency departments every year. A caregiver can support someone who needs mobility assistance with daily activities from getting in and out of bed, to negotiating stairs. They can also make sure that the home is free of trip hazards that compromise a senior’s safety.
Older adults that live alone constantly battle loneliness and isolation. A caregiver can provide much-needed socialization that might make a huge difference in a lonely senior’s life. Studies have found that seniors who remain active and socially engaged tend to be happier, healthier and even live longer than those who aren’t.
Enhanced medication compliance
The average senior takes several medications for chronic health problems. For one reason or another, many do not take their medicines as prescribed- which places their health at risk. Having someone in the household around-the-clock can help ensure your loved one is taking their medicines at the right time and right dose while also getting their other medical needs met.
Reduced agitation levels
Older adults with dementia can get disoriented, which may then cause them to get agitated or wander off. A “personal assistant” in the home can help calm and reassure someone living with cognitive decline. They might do this by engaging them in relaxing activities or just talking them through it.
Lower risk for malnutrition and dehydration
Making sure that your loved one eats nutritious foods and drinks plenty of fluids is another benefit of having a caregiver in the home. Highly trained professional caregivers make sure that seniors who have issues eating or drinking stay hydrated and well nourished.
Fewer bathing accidents
Notably for those with dementia or mobility issues, the bathroom can be a dangerous place. From providing bathing and toileting assistance, to keeping the bathroom neat and tidy, a professional in-home assistant is a great accident-prevention and personal hygiene resource.
State Regulations that Govern 24-Hour Care
Each state has its own regulations that govern 24-hour home care, which is essentially around-the-clock, daytime and nighttime care. Some states allow one caregiver to work a full shift, followed by 8 hours of rest in the client’s home. In other states, two caregivers are-allowed-to work 12-hour shifts, with the evening caregiver staying awake all night.
Family Trusted Around-the-Clock Senior Home Care
It’s not easy to find reliable around-the-clock care for your aging loved one. First In Care is a fully licensed and insured home care provider with carefully screened caregivers who are well trained to serve as an extended family in your senior’s home 24/7. Our compassionate professionals use a proven process that maintains your loved one’s self-esteem, dignity and independence. In addition to 24-hour care, we deliver family trusted services like respite care, personal care, dementia care, companionship care, medication reminders and transportation.
For your added convenience and peace of mind we offer flexible programs and affordable rates. We even accept long-term care insurance and V.A. payments! To learn more now about our client-trusted senior home care services in Manatee County, FL, please visit First In Care at: www.firstincare.com.