Advances in healthcare, lifestyle changes, and other factors mean humans are living longer than ever. But as people age, there comes the point when a question has to be addressed. Where can they spend their remaining years?
Nowadays, a nursing home is not the only option for adults as they age. Actually, for many, they do not want it. Three out of four adults age 50 or over want to stay in their homes as they age, but the majority do not think it is possible.
Thankfully, there are options to make it happen. For example, home care providers are a great option to help adults stay at home as they age. And a home care provider can also offer many benefits, including being a safer care option.
Are you interested in learning more? Keep reading!
What Are Home Care Providers?
Home care providers are professional support services that help individuals live safely at home. They visit the individual at home to provide support. There are different types of home care providers, including specialty training to care for people as they age, family members, or other loved ones.
A home care provider can receive specialized training to provide care. Often professional caregivers are therapists, nurses, assistants and have other training to provide top-quality care.
What Does Home Care Involve?
A home care provider will provide specialized care tailored to an individual’s needs, unlike a nursing home where care may be more generalized. Usually, care is focused on preserving an individual’s quality of life.
Sometimes home care providers also offer assessments of the home to ensure it is safe for the individual. In addition, adaptations to the home, such as stairlifts and shower seats, may be installed to help preserve independence.
Home care hours depend on the individual. Usually, home care providers will adapt the level of care depending on the individual’s wellbeing. An individual may only need one hour a week or care 24 hours a day.
Support tasks can vary depending on the day and the individual’s needs. However, everyday tasks home care supports includes:
Home care providers can provide companionship for individuals. Maybe they want the company to complete an activity they enjoy or have someone to talk with. Care assistants can also help seniors attend different activities and pursue their interests.
A home care provider can help with bathing, washing, and dressing. It can be harder to complete these tasks as you age. A home care provider takes away any worry so you can stay at home but maintain excellent personal care.
An individual might want to stay at home, but the home must remain a pleasant environment. A home care provider can also complete household chores such as laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping, and yard work. If the home care provider does not provide a specific task, they can help you hire a service.
A home care provider can help individuals safely prepare nutritious meals or cook if needed. They can also help arrange meal delivery programs and learn about local senior programs. You can have help cooking then attend a group meal to get to know others.
It can be a pain to ask loved ones for lifts to appointments. However, you do not need to depend on anyone with a home care provider. They can ensure you make all the appointments you need to attend.
Money management is one of the many other tasks that a home care provider may offer assistance with. They can make sure you have the proper support to manage your finances. However, you do not want to neglect bills before it is too late.
Benefits of a Home Care Provider
Home care varies significantly from a nursing home. Staff in a nursing home usually have a lot of people to care for, and an individual has to adjust to a new setting. As a result, not all their needs may be met in a nursing care setting.
Here are some of the top benefits of using a home care provider.
Not everyone needs 24-hour assistance. Maybe an individual needs assistance with a particular task. Home care providers help maintain individuals’ independence because they tailor the care to their needs.
At home, seniors can maintain control over their routine and activities. Home care empowers individuals to make informed decisions about their care with their support for their loved ones. Care can be increased or decreased depending on how the individual is doing.
Nursing homes often reduce independence quickly because of how care has to be provided. Seniors also lose control of their routine and have to follow the daily routine of the home. In contrast, home care providers can focus on the individual and step-up care in stages as required.
Stay In a Familiar Place
There is a reason people call their house a home, and why people say ‘home is where the heart is.’ It is not the house cost or material objects, but the emotional value.
Often an individual’s home provides a sense of comfort, familiarity, and many fond memories. However, taking someone away from their home can be extremely harmful and upsetting, which is why a home care provider is often an essential support lifeline.
Everyone values their own space, which is another reason why staying in a familiar place can benefit seniors who want to maintain their independence. It is also more pleasant and more stable to remain in a familiar place during a time of significant change in a senior’s life, such as if their mobility is reducing.
Maintain a Routine
Routine is essential for all ages, but there are even more benefits as people age. It allows a senior to plan and predict their day, which brings a sense of comfort. It also makes people feel secure, especially if they are experiencing health conditions that cause physical or cognitive impairment.
Moving into a nursing home or another residential healthcare facility also disrupts the routine. If a senior has a community where they live or a set routine, the change can be disturbing. It can cause a lot of stress and can make people feel unsafe. Home care providers offer visits to support and enhance an already familiar routine.
Slow Memory Loss
Whether a senior has a condition such as Alzheimer’s or their memory is slowly declining, a familiar place can slow their memory deterioration. However, moving to a nursing home and losing anchors for their memory can cause transfer trauma.
It is a big move to adapt to a new place, location, people, and routine at any age. So for seniors who have many memories at home and are used to their community. Staying in a familiar place helps them maintain habits they remember and focus on managing their memory loss in the most efficient ways.
Maintain a Secure Environment
When seniors have a home care provider, they can stay secure in their homes. You have complete control over measures that can help keep them safe, such as mobility aids, alarms, and locks. However, there is no guarantee that a nursing home will provide all the security measures a resident needs to feel safe.
Home care providers can help ensure the house is equipped for any needs, such as loss of mobility. So, you have the best of both worlds, a familiar place and the equipment you need to stay safe. Home care providers will also provide other measures to help individuals remain secure, such as setting visit times and crisis plans.
Have a Healthier Lifestyle
Some people believe that a nursing home will keep individuals healthy for longer, but the opposite is true. Studies have found that mortality risk increases along with other risks, such as infection.
There are various reasons for the increase in risks for people who move to a nursing home. First, the stress and trauma of moving can exacerbate or trigger health problems. There can be ongoing trauma for the seniors as they adapt to the new surroundings.
Also, a nursing home means a senior is exposed to an increased risk of infection. While it is nice to have other residents around, it can also be harmful to their health. As the pandemic demonstrated, illnesses and diseases can quickly spread in close living quarters, such as nursing homes.
Home care providers can help individuals maintain a healthy lifestyle. For example, staff can ensure they eat healthy meals, maintain their self-care, exercise, and interact with others.
Regular visits from home care providers also mean staff can address any health changes quickly. In addition, loved ones and service users can have peace of mind knowing trained staff are looking out for them.
Proximity to Family and Friends
The best nursing home is not always close to loved ones. It can also be hard to find availability in nearby nursing homes, which can mean people have to move further away. This is sad for the individual and the loved ones who may struggle to visit the new location.
It can feel incredibly lonely to be far away from loved ones. But, unfortunately, loneliness also hurts physical and mental health. Home care providers prevent this risk.
An individual will still have more interaction and the chance to build community if they want. But their loved ones, neighbors, and friends will also be close by.
Maintain Comfort Levels
As people age, the last thing they want is to feel less comfortable. Luckily, home care providers help them stay in the comfort of their own homes.
An individual’s own home has the comfort levels they want. They can create a pleasant environment precisely to their tastes, with the furniture they like. However, they have less control over the external environment in a nursing home.
Sometimes there are limits to how much an individual can decorate or change their room in a nursing home. However, home care allows individuals to maintain their home as it is. And they can even make it more comfortable, as they can help with household chores and other tasks to enhance the home.
Plus, the individual can continue to stick to their routine and control their life. Home care providers work around the senior’s routine to keep them as comfortable as possible.
Money can also be a factor when looking for care. The average cost of care annually in a nursing home can be cost-prohibitive. For example, a private room in a nursing home can average at $106,000 annually.
And naturally, an individual wants to pick a reputable care option, which can push the cost up even higher for some of the most in-demand nursing homes. For some people, a quality nursing home is not even an option due to the costs.
Thankfully, home care is a cost-effective alternative option without sacrificing the quality of care. In addition, aging in place allows cost-savings and gains. After all, you receive personalized care with a home care provider, which may not be possible if you have to pay for a nursing home.
It also saves the cost of sorting homes and paying for transfer costs. There is no worry about extra mortgage fees or real estate costs to sell a home. And the cost of getting to an age in place with the proper support is priceless.
The Best Home Care Provider
Home care providers offer many benefits, including being a safer option for different reasons. They help maintain an individual’s security, comfort, physical and mental health. As individuals age, it should be a time of celebration and fulfillment, which a home care provider can help provide.
Are you interested in becoming a home caregiver? Or want to pick someone to be your carer? Family Always First Home Health Care can help.
Apply now to get started. We are here to help you or a loved one receive the home care they deserve.