When an elderly person begins to have difficulty looking after themselves, it's time to consider some form of aged care. This helps ensure the person is kept safe and is able to enjoy life as much as possible without any limitations caused by their health.
Aged care is not all the same, however, and there are a few different options available. Choosing the right one for the person in question is not always an easy choice, and it comes down to a number of different factors – plus, of course, the person's own wishes.
One of the most significant decisions to make is whether the elderly person should receive aged are in their own home, or move into a residential care facility. Here are some questions to ask while you decide what's best.
Are there family nearby who can help?
One of the main benefits of a residential care home is that there's always somebody on hand to help. Whether it's an emergency or just a task that's too difficult, an experienced staff member will be available.
If you're considering a carer visiting the person at home, bear in mind that they might not always be on call. This is less of a problem if there are family members nearby who can help out at short notice.
Is there a health condition that's likely to get worse?
A lot of older people suffer from arthritis, which is what can make everyday living difficult. With a bit of assistance from time to time, this can be manageable in a home environment, but if it gets worse, this may become increasingly tricky to deal with.
Another condition that usually gets people thinking about aged care is dementia. In its early stages, it's often better for the person to live at home, as it reduces the stress and upset caused by having the condition. As it progresses, however, the person's safety is compromised. Consider whether it's better to move early while the person can understand what's happening, or wait so they can enjoy their own home for longer.
Can you make some adjustments to the person's home?
Most houses aren't suited to seniors who have trouble reaching things or using equipment with fiddly controls. If you're able to get some things adjusted, however, it can enable someone to live semi-independently for much longer.
Have you asked a doctor's opinion?
You should take your thoughts to a medical professional, whatever you're considering. Talking through it with a doctor helps you understand the implications of each decision and make sure you're doing the right thing for the elderly person's safety and happiness.