When people grow older, they inevitably start becoming dependent. This usually starts when one turns 60. Tasks that once used to be easy and natural to do change. Little things, like batching, getting dressed, walking around swiftly, going to get grocery become tiresome and hard to perform. This is when you need elderly home care. While there are a number of elderly/ old-age homes where senior citizens can decide to reside, staying at one’s own place has its own essence. Your true home gives you a sense of belongingness and autonomy that an old-age home might deprive you of. For this reason, you can live in your home and get a home care service to make your life comfortable. Following are the areas of service you can expect from a home care provider.
Elderly Personal Care
This is the most basic form of care that is provided by nurses. Here, as an elderly person, you are helped with all the basic yet important tasks of everyday. Starting right from oral hygiene and bathing, the care giver helps in dressing and personal grooming. Besides that, he/she also takes care of diet by feeding and reminds timely of medication. At times, the elderly is too weak to even get in and out of the bed. The caregiver helps the elderly perform those actions. To maintain a good physical health, the caregiver also helps the elderly in performing light exercises. The caregiver helps ensuring safety and fall prevention as well as provides toileting care to the elderly.
As people age and enter the “elderly” phase of life, other people around them become busy with their life. The children and grandchildren all get so engaged in their lives, they hardly find time to spend with their grandparents. This makes elderly people develop a sense of isolation- which can have a great impact on their physical and mental health. They might become depressed and susceptible to diseases and health problems. This is where a companion care giver comes to the rescue. A companion caregiver does all that an elderly personal caregiver does. In addition to that, the caregiver provides a mental and emotional support and social interaction. The caregiver encourages the elderly person to pursue his/her hobbies and do things that make him/her happy.
Hospital to Home Care
This is the kind of care provided when a person just recovers a serious illness and gets discharged from hospital. When an elderly person gets back home from hospital, it is quite obvious that the person needs a lot of help with everything. Right from brushing, bathing, dressing to having food- all the aspects are taken care of by a caregiver. The most important function of this caregiver is to take the elderly person the hospital when there are appointments and give the medication on time. Besides this, he/she is also responsible for the rehabilitation of the elderly person through physiotherapy, occupational therapy, etc.
A lot of times, family members choose to provide caregiving to the beloved elderly person in their family. When a person decides to do so, he/she has to make a lot of compromises with his/her own life. The caregiver can no longer dedicated a lot of time to himself/herself since he/she has to care for the elderly person. This makes the caregiver’s life monotonous and stressful. This is when a respite care service can be chosen. A respite caregiver takes the place of the family caregiver for some time- which gives the family caregiver a break. A respite caregiver performs all the home care activities that the family caregiver had been carrying out.
Specialty care is one of services offered by caregivers- just a little more specific. When the elderly person is suffering from a certain condition, you can choose a caregiver specially dealing with that condition. 3 of them have been discussed below.
1. Dementia Care – A dementia caregiver helps an elderly suffering from dementia. This caregiver is specialized in dealing with dementia patients. He/she provides the right kind of living environment for the elderly person. The primary responsibilities are – helping stimulate the elderly person’s cognitive abilities through memory games and using other tactics. People suffering with dementia are agitated because of their condition. So, the caregiver has to make modifications in the home settings such that the elderly feels comfortable. Besides this, the caregiver takes care of the daily routine of the elderly person.
2. Cancer Care – The cancer care providing caregiver knows the exact requirements of a cancer patients. Apart from the basic care providing act, the caregiver has to motivate the elderly patient and give him/her needed optimism. A lot of times cancer patients give up the hope to live. So, a caregiver’s responsibility increases.
3. Stroke Care – Stroke care providing caregivers help elderly persons who had witnessed a stroke. For people who had had a stroke – recovery is really challenging. The patient undergoes emotional, physical, and behavioral changes that are hard to deal with all alone. A caregiver takes care of the stroke patient by helping with recovery in all the aspects. He/she provides physical care and an emotional support that ensures a faster recovery of the elderly person.
Home care services are very helpful for elderly people who want help with everyday tasks without having to be in an old age home. However, know that home care and home health care are two different things. While home care is all about basic care giving responsibilities associated with daily chores, home health care lets the caregiver take up medical responsibilities as well.