Making the decision to bring in a professional to help your aging loved one is never easy. The choice is made even more difficult when you must decide between in-home care and a long-term care facility. Both options offer advantages and are administered by a caring team of qualified healthcare professionals. However, many families would agree that working with an in-home care agency provides a more satisfactory experience. Learn more about in-home care and long-term care facilities to make an informed decision for your elderly loved one.
What is In-Home Care?
In-home care has become one of the most requested services among the elderly community. This type of specialized care is recommended for individuals who require assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), such as meal preparation, grooming, hygiene, and light housekeeping duties. In-home care is primarily used among seniors who do not drive and need transportation to places like stores, salons, and doctor appointments. For elderly loved ones that live alone, in-home caregivers can also provide seniors with the companionship needed to reduce the risk of social isolation and depression. Other services such as medication reminders and help with bill paying can be provided.
What Are the Pros and Cons of In-Home Care?
In-home care services allow elderly adults the chance to receive day-to-day help with personal care while maintaining their dignity and a high quality of life. One of the biggest benefits of in-home care is the ability to maintain the comforts of home. Many seniors are resistant when asked to move out of their home. With in-home care, your loved one can remain at home where they are most comfortable and in a familiar location. An in-home care provider can also offer seniors one-on-one attention, as well as personalized care and compassion.
Many seniors, especially those struggling with health conditions like dementia, find comfort in routines. One important aspect of in-home care is the ability to provide seniors with a regular routine with people that are familiar to them. Through personalized scheduling, your loved one can maintain a daily routine that includes bathing, dressing, grooming, eating, exercise, and social interaction. By creating a healthy routine, seniors are able to retain some control over their lives and minimize confusion. In-home care is also customized for each patient meaning your loved one will receive the care and companionship that best meets their needs and personality.
Unlike long-term care facilities which provide the same services to each patient, in-home care offers a more personalized and flexible approach to care. For seniors who wish to maintain a higher level of independence, it can be more minimal. Seniors who are immobile or require more extensive “hands-on” care may desire more daily services, such as help with bathing, toileting, and other basic hygiene tasks. In short, in-home care can be tailored to fit the needs of your loved one. Another minor perk that many seniors enjoy with in-home care? The ability to keep their beloved pets in their home.
Another major advantage of choosing in-home care is the peace of mind that comes with it. Many families can find serenity in knowing their loved one remains in the family home while still receiving the care that they need to thrive. When working with an in-home care agency, families are regularly updated about the well-being of their loved ones. The elderly adult can also maintain a quiet and peaceful existence without the noise and chaos that many nursing homes create. However, there are some downsides to in-home care. Living at home, even with the help of an in-home care agency, can be slightly disadvantageous in the event of a medical emergency.
What is Long-Term Care?
When in-home care is not a viable option, moving to a long-term care facility may be an alternative solution. Long-term assisted living facilities provide seniors with round-the-clock supervision, as well as hygiene and grooming assistance, and other healthcare services. Social and recreational activities are also scheduled on a regular basis to help seniors maintain proper socialization for their mental and emotional health. Foodservice and housekeeping are also provided in most long-term care facilities.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Long-Term Care?
Long-term care facilities have both pros and cons that may affect your decision. One of the biggest advantages of living in a long-term care facility is the fully-serviced environment designed to meet the unique needs of aging adults. Staff will administer all housekeeping duties and ensure that the space is clean and organized. The facility is also equipped with safety precautions such as ample handrails, ramps, and wheelchair and walker-friendly spaces. Some long-term care facilities also offer various amenities, such as activity centers, staffed kitchens, and convenient on-site salons and stores.
However, there are several downsides to choosing a long-term care facility. First, long-term care facilities can be very expensive. In the past five years, the cost of living in a long-term care facility has increased 3.5 percent each year. Not being able to remain in the family home is also a huge negative for seniors and their families. Your loved one may not feel comfortable moving out of their home and may dislike living in a senior facility and perhaps even having to share a room with another senior. It is important to consider these aspects when comparing in-home care with long-term care facilities.
Contact an In-Home Care Agency Today
Many families struggle with the decision to choose the best living situation for their aging parents. While including your loved one in the decision, it is important to locate a care service that best fits your family’s unique needs and budget. Start by figuring out how much help your loved one really needs. Also be realistic about how much help you and your family are able to provide. In the majority of cases, in-home care services are sufficient for most family’s needs. For more information, contact an in-home care agency today.