Growing up, our parents might have jokingly asked us if we would keep them by our sides and care for them in their old age. We always responded with a resounding yes because our young minds could not fathom why this was even a question.
Fast forward to today, we might suddenly be faced with a conundrum. Should we send our elderly parent with growing medical needs and physical dependency to a nursing home? Or do we keep them by our sides and let them age in place?
Some adult children have little choice but to opt for the former arrangement because they feel inadequate to be effective caregivers, due to limited medical sensibility. Others insist on keeping their parents at home. However, they struggle to cope with the demands of caregiving, suffering from compassion fatigue as a result.
We do not have to dwell in these extremes when home care is becoming an increasingly accessible option. Even then, not many of us readily opting for home care. Could this be due to limited understanding of home care?
Here we look into some of the pros and cons of home care to help you make a more informed decision:
Best of Both Worlds
With home care, your elderly parents do not have to trade the comforts of home for the safety of medical care. They can receive expert medical attention even while enjoying the ease of recovering in familiar surroundings. This lessens the mental and emotional load of having to adapt to their new situation and allows them to direct all their energy towards recovery.
Cons: Based on your elderly parent’s needs, your house might need to be outfitted with additional elderly-friendly facilities. There are additional monetary and spatial costs to consider for this.
There are also instances whereby an elderly patient might be suffering from special conditions. Ones that require medical specialists’ attention and it may go beyond the scope of the caregivers’ expertise.
To make an informed decision, first, assess your elderly parents’ needs. Secondly, discuss with home care providers to find out more about the suitability of home care for you.
Flexibility in Approach
The needs and level of dependence of an elderly individual vary from time to time. This means that you might find yourself being able to cope with caring for your elderly parent in some aspects but not others. At times, you might just want a short respite from caregiving responsibilities. Since home care services are available on demand, you enjoy the luxury of choosing when and where you would like to employ the help of a caregiver.
When you opt for home care, your elderly parent will be assigned dedicated care coordinators. They are able to commit the time and effort to fully understand your elderly parents’ unique needs and cater accordingly, rather than using a homogeneous approach. You should also take the opportunity to assess the suitability of caregivers, identify what works best for you and what needs to change.
Cons: While your elderly parent stands to gain from personalised care, they could be forgoing the interactions and friendships that they may develop with counterparts in a nursing or day care facility. There is great value in the sense of community that arises from the shared experiences of elderly folks living together.
Nevertheless, home care providers these days are moving towards a culture of combining both caregiving and companionship. There are many heartfelt stories of caregivers and patients developing unique bonds and friendships. Meaning which, your elderly parent need not necessarily be missing out on that aspect. To find out home care services for yourself or someone you know, click herenow! If you are not sure of how you can go about home care, give our care coordinator a call at 8498 4598.