When In-Home Care is Necessary

When visiting elderly parents, you may get the feeling that daily chores and tasks are a struggle for them to complete. There might be dirty dishes overflowing the sink or the elderly parent wears the same clothes every single day for a whole week. They might not be able to remember the last time they took their medication, or they might injure themselves constantly when moving about their homes.

When the question about in-home care comes up, you might dismiss it because your parents still seem physically well. Yet in-home care is much more than having a nurse treat certain medical conditions and offer health care inside the home. These treatment services allow caregivers to check in on the elderly parent to ensure their needs are taken care of, help with daily activities, and provide skilled care. To determine whether in-home care is necessary for your elderly parent, you will want to look for certain warning signs during a care assessment.

Care Assessment Factors

A care assessment focuses on identifying mental and physical problems that your elderly parents face that are detriments to having a happy and healthy life. This assessment may be performed by medical professionals or personal caregivers. If you plan on giving your elderly parent a care assessment, use these three factors as part of your evaluation.

Physical Limitations

As we grow older, we experience a number of age-related conditions that can interfere with daily activities. One of the most common issues your elderly parents may face is limited mobility. If your parents are having difficulty walking, bending over, climbing stairs or navigating around objects then you may want to consider in-home care. Also consider care if your parents lose physical strength to pick up objects or are weak when standing in place for certain time periods.

Other physical limitations may include hearing and vision loss. While technology has advanced to offer hearing and vision aids, if your parent’s quality of life becomes affected or they are becoming injured due to these issues than an in-house nurse or caregiver should be considered.

Daily Life Limitations

Elderly parents may require extra help to perform simple tasks around their home or when they are doing things around town.  They may be unable to do the work for themselves, or it takes an extra long time for them to complete the task. If your parents show difficulty with any of the following simple tasks, contacting a home care agency is a viable option.

  • dressing
  • bathing
  • cooking
  • eating
  • housework
  • driving
  • making appointments
  • handling finances
  • grocery shopping
  • personal hygiene

Mental Health Limitations

Mental health problems can be the most difficult issue to determine in an elderly parent. Yet there are certain signs to look for if your parent is experiencing memory loss or depression. Elderly parents who are confused about where they have placed their items such as medication or keys, or lose track of what tasks they were doing throughout the day, may have cognitive impairment such as the early stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia. Elderly parents who show the signs of depression will possess low energy levels, lack an interest in doing activities that they enjoyed in the past, or have a loss of appetite.

Transition To In-Home Care

It can be an unsettling experience for yourself and your elderly parent when obtaining in-home care. The first step to have a smooth transition is to talk about the changes with everyone involved. Go over the types of services that will be given and reassure the elderly parent that their best interests will be kept at the forefront. Have them meet with the in-home caregiver while letting the elderly parent know that you will still be available to visit and engage in activities with them.