Can live-in homecare be a good alternative to residential or nursing care homes?
The joy of the freedom of being in their own homes in familiar surroundings makes many individuals select in-home care rather than nursing home care. Most seniors report having a superb quality of life and happiness with in-home care, and based on statistics, they receive up to 50% fewer doctor’s annual visits.
Concerning in-home care, families should determine whether to employ a private caregiver or use an agency. Agencies accomplish much of the legwork, such as finding qualified candidates, conducting background checks, confirming their credentials, managing the financial aspects. Usually referred to as convalescent homes, nursing home care is the most suitable choice for those needing more than primary care that can be handled in traditional home settings.
Nursing homes are designed to provide around-the-clock medical care and assistance for patients in a residential setting. Caregivers will assist beneficiaries with all of the ADLs, personal care needs, mobility issues, meals, cleaning, laundry, and provide skilled medical care and therapy whenever it’s needed. That’s why so many families who feel that full-time care is needed go for nursing home care because they offer many services to residents and ease caregiver stress.
Most facilities offer semi-private and private rooms, with private rooms costing a bit more than shared spaces. Some homes may have age restrictions, and most don’t allow on-site cooking or pets on the premises. However, many seniors prefer the amenities in nursing homes vs home care, as convalescent centers often offer regular in-house activities such as crafts, games and fitness in addition to outings for shopping and entertainment with transportation provided.
These facilities may also offer advanced memory care services vital in the latter stages of conditions like Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s Disease. Those with regular health issues, intense mobility problems or those suffering from severe injuries may find a nursing home an ideal alternative.
You must consider this in your particular situation. Depending on where you live, it might be less costly to have an elder in specialized care because they provide all the food, doctor, physical therapy, and enrichment for one low price.
On top of that, you can pay for round-the-clock personal attendants and still pay less than what you could do if you moved into a more prominent place to accommodate your elder. The situation may differ if the person has a form of dementia since it is usually better to keep them in familiar surroundings.
In that case, the live-in aide will suffer burnout at some point as the person they are caring for will not have a set sleep schedule or eating schedule and will need an alert caregiver to monitor them 24/7.
If the caregiver lives in the same house, they lose their freedom to have lunch with their friends or schedule appointments. Their client’s daily activities of living are now the priority.
A better setup is having several caregivers working at the home to give respite to each other to return to their own homes and needs. It is not that care at nursing or residential homes has drawbacks or lacks care compassion; it is the ease and convenience some would experience when being taken care of by a professional caregiver.
Professional opinions and past personal experiences of those who went through similar situations play a significant role in calling the shots for such a critical question. It heavily depends on the current condition of the person who is seeking care and their budget.
For example, if they have a form of dementia, they should set up several caregivers who work at the home, so if one of them wants a break, the other one can fill in for the second shift. Typically, the senior’s loved ones will designate one of these caregivers as the “head of the household,” responsible for overseeing scheduling, specific shopping, making physician’s appointments, and other specific tasks.
Also, seniors’ needs vary from one person to another, as some of them will need help with showering, transportation, meals, and other tasks, regardless of their complexity.
It depends on the conditions of the person in need of help. For example, if a senior has Alzheimer’s, they need 24/7 care. In the case of home care, the caregiver must always be observant and ready to help. In this case, the caregiver will lose their freedom. They can’t have quality time with their family, gather with friends, or visit a dentist. In these cases, assigning a group of caregivers is more thoughtful. Or opting for a nursing home may prove to be a better choice.