If your aging loved one is like most, they want to remain in their current home for as long as possible. Sadly, most seniors eventually face functional limitations that interfere with their ability to lead an independent lifestyle. When that day comes, older adults— and their families— often must choose between receiving care at home versus moving into a facility. What follows are several reasons why more and more families are now choosing home care as the best option for their aging loved ones.
Older Adults Face these Challenges
Along with age come inevitable physical and mental challenges that dictate what a senior can and can’t do. One way to measure your loved one’s ability to remain independent is the Katz Index of Independence in Activities of Daily Living (Katz ADLs).
Functional limitations that older adults oftentimes face can be caused by factors like:
- Recovering after an injury, stroke, or surgery
- Chronic medical condition (cancer, heart disease, arthritis, etc.)
- Cognitive decline due to dementia or Alzheimer’s
- Lack of reliable transportation
- Financial hardship
- Vision changes
COVID-19 has made it even harder for many aging-in-place seniors to maintain their active lifestyles. Once a loved one needs help completing one or more ADLs, families are forced to make tough decisions about where that care will take place.
Cons of Long-Term Care Facilities
The main benefit of care provided in a nursing home environment is having trained professionals available 24/7 for any emergencies. The cons of placing your loved one in a long-term care facility include:
- Not being able to see them as often, especially with COVID-19 restrictions
- Privacy concerns, notably when staying in a semi-private room
- Limited meal and dietary selections
- Cost-of-care when financial resources are limited
- Staffing shortages
If your loved one qualifies for skilled care, Medicare will only cover the full cost of a semi-private nursing home room for up to 20 days and then 80% of the costs for an additional 80 days. Medicaid will only pay for a semi-private room once a senior has met strict eligibility requirements.
Why Families Trust Home Care More
For many of the reasons listed above, a growing number of families are now choosing in-home care to meet their aging loved ones’ needs. Whether provided by informal caregivers or trained professionals, seniors that receive in-home care typically enjoy these benefits as a result:
No matter how hard you try, a nursing home won’t feel like— or be as comfortable as— your loved one’s residence. Sleeping in a comfy bed, lounging in their favorite recliner, or bathing in their bathroom are all positives for a senior’s dignity, self-esteem, and independence.
Living out the remainder of their lives surrounded by friends and family is highly beneficial for an aging adult’s health and wellbeing. In most cases, seniors who remain at home enjoy more active and fulfilling lives than those residing in nursing homes.
Seniors who remain at home also enjoy a greater sense of independence by setting their own schedule, going to their favorite places and activities, and eating their favorite foods. There’s no way to duplicate that same level of freedom and self-sufficiency while in a nursing home with the same routine for every resident.
It’s typically safer
Nursing homes do offer some safety advantages over personal residences. Conversely, they also present safety challenges due to understaffing concerns and the potential to spread infectious diseases very quickly— like COVID-19. Once your loved one’s home has undergone safety modifications to accommodate any limitations that might have, it will provide a safe, familiar environment for the care to take place.
Family Trusted In-Home Care for Seniors in Chevy Chase, MD
Finding the right person to care for your loved one can be challenging when you’re busy or live far away. At Help at Home Senior Care, we’ve provided personalized in-home care to families in Chevy Chase, Rockville, and the greater Washington, DC metropolitan area for over 20 years. Our mission is delivering the most comprehensive and compassionate senior home care possible, using a unique, hands-on approach with every client and family we serve.
Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, our in-home services include personal care, companion care, transitional care, respite care, geriatric care, end-of-life care, Alzheimer’s and dementia care, and more. To learn more about our top-quality home care services or schedule an initial assessment for a senior in our service area today, please visit www.helpathomecare.com.