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An estimated 90% of American seniors have expressed the desire to age in place. Continuing to live at home can help seniors to maintain a sense of comfort and independence that relocation might challenge. The question is, how can you ensure that this is a safe and sustainable option?
As we age, most of us will find that we need assistance. Regardless of the presence of specific illnesses or disabilities, we start to struggle with activities of daily living.
Home health care is a solution that many families utilize to allow elderly loved ones to live at home. However, some families often start out trying to provide that care, themselves. Which option is better?
Read on as we talk about the differences between professional and family caregivers. Ultimately, we believe that professional home health care aides can make a significant difference.
The Benefits and Risks of Being a Family Caregiver
Naturally, you want to stay involved in your loved one’s care. There are many valid reasons to do so, but there are also potential risks that can arise when you are the sole caregiver of an elderly individual. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits and risks of being a family caregiver.
Few people know your loved one better than you do. Together, you feel a sense of trust and comfort that is unparalleled. Plus, you have your loved one’s best interest at heart when you provide them with the care they need.
It isn’t just beneficial for your loved one that you provide them with care. It may help you to feel better or more confident about their health and safety. Many family caregivers also feel a great sense of pride or fulfillment when they take on this role.
The biggest risk of being a family caregiver is caregiver burnout. Caregiver burnout refers to mental, emotional, or physical exhaustion that can arise when you are responsible for someone else’s care. The truth is that while providing your loved one with care can be fulfilling, it can also become stressful, exhausting, and painful.
How Professional Home Health Care Can Help
There are tons of benefits of partnering with a home health care agency near you. The goal is not to replace you as a caregiver, but to give you the help you need to improve your loved one’s care. Let’s go over some of the biggest benefits of working with home health care aides.
Providing Family Caregivers With a Respite
It is useful to remember that you can avoid caregiver burnout without relinquishing your role as a caregiver. It’s all about striking a balance and finding the time to take care of yourself, too. Home health care aides can care for your loved one while you are unavailable, giving you more time and space for yourself.
Assisting With Activities of Daily Living
Sometimes, the closeness between two family members can make certain tasks difficult or uncomfortable. For example, your loved one may not want to admit to you that they need help bathing, using the restroom, or cleaning their home. It’s not uncommon for seniors to want to avoid putting more responsibilities on family members as they age.
Home health care aides perform these tasks and others on a professional level. It may be easier for your loved one to accept that assistance.
Providing an Increased Level of Companionship
Even when you are the sole caregiver, you probably can’t be with your loved one at all times. You may have a job to go to during the day, children to take care of, or other obligations to meet. This is completely normal and expected!
By hiring home health care aides, your loved one can enjoy an increased level of companionship. Professional caregivers can be there when you can’t. They can widen your loved one’s circle of socialization and increase their mental stimulation throughout the day.
Detecting Changes in Your Loved One’s Condition
If you are the only person who sees your loved one on a daily basis, you may not detect changes in their condition. It is often harder to see a change when that change is happening incrementally in front of you. If you don’t have experience with senior care, you may also not know the signs of certain conditions or illnesses.
Professional home health care providers have a wide array of experience working with elderly people. While not all of them have a medical background, they are trained to notice signs of decline. Together, you may catch these signs early, which can help you to provide faster and better care.
Providing the Tools Needed for Holistic Care
Family members may not have all of the tools to provide holistic care. For example, you may not have a vehicle that can accommodate wheelchairs. You may not have the background to provide memory care for a person with Alzheimer’s.
Home health care providers have all of the tools to make life at home easier. They can provide transportation to and from doctor’s appointments, send in memory care providers, and more.
Home Health Care Services Can Strengthen Your Caregiving Abilities
When you’re providing care for a family member, it can seem unnecessary or unwanted to bring in professional help. The truth is that hiring home health care services doesn’t mean that you have to relinquish your role. Instead, professional caregivers can strengthen your ability to provide care.
Venice Home Care is here to help you provide the best care for your loved one. We offer customized services that will fit the specific needs of your family. To find out more or schedule an initial appointment, contact us today.