While we don’t like to discuss it, most of us realize that our loved ones will require some type of care assistance as they enter the later stages of their life. If you’re one of millions of Americans with a parent who requires assistance, there is a lot you need to know. Although two-thirds of individuals in your situation use friends and family to look after their parents, another one-third choose to employ the services of professional care providers through home care organizations.
These will be the most critical points to consider when seeking care:
1. Assess Your Parent’s Situation
Before you can choose a home care solution for a parent, you need to consider their needs. Is their medical condition stable? Do they require skilled personal care? Merely companionship? These will help guide your decision.
It’s also important to consider your parent’s emotional, spiritual and cultural needs. If their primary language isn’t English, for example, you might want to find a bilingual caregiver. Your parent also may feel more comfortable with a care provider of the same sex, or someone who is culturally sensitive to their situation.
2. Home Care Helps with Personal Care
If your parent needs assistance with daily activities like bathing, dressing and using the bathroom, and other self-care activities, you may need a personal care assistant while you are at work or living hundreds of miles away. These services can be provided by home care companies or residential facilities that also provide home care services, such as Nye Health Services.
3. Home Care Helps with Household Tasks
Knowing that your parent is receiving help with household tasks like light housework, meal preparation and shopping can relieve you of the stress of wondering whether they can live independently in a safe and healthy home. It allows your parent to continue to live their life at home, but with assurance they will have meals and a clean, safe environment.
4. Home Care Provides Companion Services
For many elderly individuals who are mentally alert but physically limited, the greatest concern is isolation and loneliness. If your parents are homebound, or nearly so, this is a real concern. Companion services provided by organizations like Nye Health Services bring a friendly companion to your parent’s home to stay with them and provide assistance with non-medical issues, like light housework and basic support. This keeps mom or dad emotionally well and fends off depression – a problem for one in seven older adults in need of care.
5. Home Care Keeps Your Parent as Independent as Possible
Seniors often must relinquish control of their lives when they move to a skilled nursing facility, or nursing home. Aging in place, whether in the family home or in an elder community, allows them to maintain their freedom and live as independently as possible. Home care services make that possible.
6. Be Careful About Lower Costs for Individual Home Care
While the average cost for non-medical home care though an individual caregiver is typically 25% less up front than through a home care agency, your actual costs may be more, and you will have to do a lot of the work yourself. When you hire an individual directly, you are responsible for hiring and firing, background checks, taxes, and other responsibilities that fall on the family rather than on the agency.
Nye Health Services offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing, memory care, and now home care services. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call 402.753.1400 to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit NyeHealthServices.com for more information.