After several emotional discussions with your family, you’ve finally decided to seek eldercare assistance. Like most older adults in Virginia, you’d prefer to age in place for as long as possible, making home care your best option. That said, you recently heard from a dear friend who moved into an assisted living community, and they seem to be doing just fine.
Other seniors, you know favor in-home care because the “personal assistant” gives them their undivided attention while there. What should you do? Deciding between eldercare options isn’t easy. Using this home care benefits guide as a reference will help ensure it’s the right decision for you.
Why Do Seniors in Virginia Prefer In-Home Care?
Family caregivers and aging loved one’s partner with home care providers for these reasons:
If you are like most seniors, you’ve lived in the same neighborhood for years. Moving across town or state lines into an assisted living community could mean changing stores, your place of worship, and even healthcare providers – all of which can be very stressful.
Because you receive all the support you need in your private residence, family and friends can visit you just as much as they normally would. With home care, families tend to stay more involved with the care and maintain a closer bond with loved ones. Most nursing homes and assisted living communities have strict visiting hours.
Under the watchful eye of your “personal assistant,” you will be less likely to experience an injurious fall or other accident as opposed to living in an understaffed facility without reliable supervision. A trained professional caregiver can also restore your peace of mind by pointing out home safety modifications that need to be completed.
Privately funded home care can be custom-tailored to your specific needs. For instance, you may only need help with light housework or running errands for a few hours per week. But if you eventually require 24-hour or live-in care, most providers also offer those services.
Sometimes older adults just need someone to talk to. If you’re like most seniors, you have a “mental library” of fascinating stories and life experiences to share. As opposed to many other eldercare settings, home care allows you to openly discuss your life or current events with someone who will listen attentively.
While in the home, your caregiver will give you their undivided attention. In addition to making you feel special, home care will make it more likely for all your wishes to be respected.
Unlike a nursing home, one of the main benefits of senior home care is that it allows you to maintain your freedom and independence. In most instances, you can still enjoy your social activities, hobbies, and other interests as desired.
Spending your retirement years in the safety, comfort, and familiarity of your own home is highly beneficial for the average senior’s emotional health, mental health, and memory function. Conversely, moving into a new home may cause you to feel anxious, lonely, and depressed.
When you are recovering from an illness, surgery, or injury, evidence would seem to indicate that recuperating at home versus a skilled care facility results in faster healing rates, fewer complications, and a lower risk for rehospitalization.
Home care typically – although not always – costs less than other eldercare options. In general, eight hours or less of professional home care will be less expensive than moving into a nursing home or assisted living community. That’s a huge plus, especially when your family is pooling its resources to pay for the services you need!
Note: Eldercare costs vary by geographic location and the type of care provided. Learn more about your state by clicking here now.
Making the Most of Your Home Care Services
Once you’ve decided to start in-home senior care, here’s how to get the biggest “bang” for your retirement bucks:
Prioritize your caregiving needs
Based on the home care provider’s initial care assessment, compile a prioritized list of your caregiving needs by ranking them in order of importance. For instance, you may want to eat healthier or get out of the house more to exercise or socialize with loved ones.
While compiling your home care “wish list,” don’t forget to plan for contingencies in the event your condition would happen to grow worse. You can also use this same approach to prepare for long-term objectives, such as advance care planning, estate planning, financial planning, or making funeral arrangements.
Form a caregiving “dream team.”
Although most agency-supplied caregivers are well-trained to perform a variety of non-medical in-home services – including personal care, light housework, and meals – there will be times when they aren’t there.
Starting with your professional caregiver, form a caregiving team comprised of trusted family members, community volunteers, and friends. Inventory all the resources at your disposal and assign tasks based on each member’s skills and availability.
Based on what you’ve learned, recruit healthcare specialists like doctors, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, dieticians, and pharmacists to fill in any remaining caregiving gaps. Eldercare experts, including elder law attorneys, benefits counselors, financial advisors, and certified public accountants, can also be invaluable additions to any care team.
And finally, a geriatric care manager can offer invaluable insight for organizing, monitoring, and facilitating an eldercare plan as your needs become more complex.
Communication is key
In keeping with the last point, open and honest communication is vital when working with a home care provider. Don’t hesitate to ask your caregiver or their supervisor for periodic updates on your condition and changing needs. Once you’ve discussed your health status, share what you’ve learned with friends and family.
Most reputable home care agencies will provide periodic updates and offer caregiving advice –for instance, ways to modify your residence to create a safer and more comfortable living space.
Make changes when necessary
In addition to requesting updates from your home care provider, don’t hesitate to personally assess how well the services are going. Be sure to ask your kids for advice, along with other vested family members and friends.
If the current caregiver is failing to adequately meet your needs – or your personalities don’t click – discuss the situation with a supervisor so they can find you a suitable replacement.
Fill in any remaining caregiving gaps
If your eldercare plan still has holes, fill them with outside resources like informal caregivers, a meal delivery service, a ride-sharing service, or adult day care. Your local Area Agency on Aging (AAA) can also be an invaluable resource for locating senior services you may otherwise not know about.
Flexible In-Home Care for Seniors in Virginia
When you or your loved one need assistance, contact AmeriCare Plus in Virginia. While proudly serving families in Alleghany, Bedford, and Orange, we are a fully licensed and insured home care provider with highly trained professionals who are experts at delivering the nurturing our clients’ need. As an extended family in your senior’s home, our compassionate caregivers can perform duties like light housekeeping, personal care, dementia care, companionship care, medication reminders, and even live-in and 24-hour care.
Our agency’s focus is maintaining your loved one’s quality of life, as well as their dignity, self-esteem, and independence. For your added convenience, all our in-home services can be individually personalized into an affordable package when and where you need them! Please visit us here now to learn more about us or schedule a FREE initial consultation for a senior in our service area.