When Family Caregivers May Not Be Enough
Is it time to seek professional assistance in caring for an elderly family member? The answer may be yes if your loved one’s living situation is not conducive to providing family-only care, if his or her cognitive abilities have been impacted, or if a family member is unable to provide the level of assistance necessary on a daily basis that your loved one truly needs.
There can be many different considerations to take into account in regard to your loved one’s living situation. If your loved one wants to remain in his or her longtime home and you cannot be there every day to provide the kind of help he or she requires, looking into professional assistance may be necessary. If your loved one is willing to move into your home or another home but you are similarly unable to be present for him or her, due to your own work or family obligations, a better choice may be an assisted living facility where you can visit regularly but also be assured of your loved one’s consistent access to the necessary care.
Many adult children focus on the physical capabilities of parents or other loved ones when deciding whether it is necessary to seek professional caregiving. Cognitive function, however, can be just as great in importance. Your loved one may be physically able to handle tasks like cooking and cleaning, but unable cognitively to remember to turn off the stove before food burns, or to lock his or her door at night. If this is the case, your loved one probably needs either an in-home aide who can help with these tasks, or to move either into your home or into an assisted living facility. There should be no shame in being unable to handle these issues yourself, if you decide to choose an assisted living facility instead.
When you have made the decision to seek help, there are a number of options to choose from. Your loved one may benefit from a personal companion who can assist with errands and basic tasks like cooking. Or they may need personal care if he or she requires assistance with bathing and dressing. Finally, assisted living is an option if in-home care is not enough. Each of these options has benefits and drawbacks, but any could be the right choice for your family.
To further explore caregiving options for your loved one, please contact our office to schedule an appointment.