Choosing a Care Option for Your Elderly Relative can be a daunting prospect and if you have never had to look at this before can be confusing for all involved.
Dealing with a deterioration in the health or wellbeing of an elderly relative can be a stressful situation for everyone involved. Sometimes they may be completely dependent on full time care, whilst many are able to retain a degree of independence with regular assistance with tasks that are difficult.
Whatever situation you face, this guide should give you an introduction to choosing a care option for your elderly relative.
Care homes are often the first solution that jumps to mind when families notice a change in their relatives. Of course, for many it’s a necessary last resort if the person in question requires full time assistance. Where mobility is a severe issue or mental deterioration such as dementia makes it unsafe for them to be left alone, only 24 hour assistance can provide the comfort and security that they require.
This can be a short term solution if someone is recovering from hospital, or a long term move.
Living with Family
A less distressing option for many elderly people who require assistance, full time or part time, living with family is an alternative to care homes. Although impractical for families who are unable to take on the role of carer, or who don’t have a household that can be made suitable for an elderly person, it’s an increasingly popular option. It’s more affordable than a care home and a less alien environment for someone who has lost the independence to live in their own home.
One of the biggest issues that people face as they get older is that their house becomes difficult to live in. Whether they can no longer tackle the stairs or the upkeep is simply too much, sheltered housing is a great choice for elderly people who still want independence, but cannot have it in their current home. Sheltered housing is small and easy to maintain, and has 24 hour assistance if ever they do have an emergency.
Just because they’re struggling to clean, garden, cook or do the shopping doesn’t necessarily mean that an elderly relative has to move out though. Mobility aids such as stairlifts and handrails can make it easier for them to get around, whilst home care can be provided to help with their daily routine. Whether they struggle with person hygiene, cleaning or admin, there’s many ways that you home care can allow people to keep their independence with dignity.
The choices that you make when it comes to care options for the elderly are dependent on their condition (which can change rapidly in a short space of time), budget, and of course their own wishes. If possible, have a frank and open discussion with your relative when deciding how to deal with their health and wellbeing. Remember that if you were in their position, you’d want to be as happy, comfortable and independent as possible in your last few years, with a safe in how and where you live.
Article written by Kelly Gilmour-Grassam, freelance copywriter who often writes for Locala Homecare.