When seniors care needs change
Updated: Sep 9, 2022
We all age differently. Seniors aged 65+ face an increased vulnerability to decline in health & mobility decline, and many risks arise. Some risk factors are genetic, part of your family history, race, and gender, and are non-modifiable. Other risk factors can be partly influenced by a healthy lifestyle, diet & some physical exercise.
The best way to cope with any care needs changes is to be prepared, flexible, and knowledgeable about what your loved one's senior living options are when your care needs do change. Life is unpredictable. Have a Care Plan (also referred to as an Advance Care Plan) and discuss with your loved one(s) and or family how and where you, or the person in question, wish/wishes to age in place. This is easier to arrange for more independent & healthier seniors who have no cognitive challenges such as Dementia/Alzheimer's disease.
Some seniors are not prepared for changing care needs, and or are in denial and not open to outside help. They struggle often in silence and hide from a loved one that they do need help because they feel that they are losing independence. With home care support, seniors actually gain more independence than without and also gain many benefits such as help with tasks & activities of everyday living (ADLs), Companionship. Personal care & homemaking.
The risk of chronic illnesses, health conditions such as infections, and dehydration also increase with aging. Seniors' mobility usually declines unless they have been physically active and are still slightly active to the best of their abilities, and choose an overall healthy lifestyle and diet. As mobility declines during the aging process the risk of falls increases. Many seniors have to have to be hospitalized after a fall or due to other declining health issues, to help control their health issues.
Below are some alarming signs to monitor regarding the ability to manage independently at home:
Worsening overall health
Decrease in water intake
Declining chronic health issues
Sudden weight loss
A lack of personal hygiene
Urinary tract infection (UTI)
No fresh food at home and, or expired food
Poor diet in general
The home is cluttered and unclean
Confusion, irritability & high level of forgetfulness
Loss of judgment
Feeling lonely, isolated, and or depressed
Loss of control over the financial situation
Rarely or not leaving the home
A decline in social activities & outings
& much more.
The above signs indicate that a senior needs home care support. Contact a private professional quality home care company to do a free home care consultation and access care needs, mobility & home safety. One of the benefits of having flexible home care support is that the health status, cognitive ability, mobility, medication & water intake are being monitored closely by a Registered Nurse who then accordingly adjusts the care plan to the client's changing care needs.
If you're not a family member of a senior you are concerned about, alert one (if possible) to get in touch with the senior's Family Physician. Many seniors avoid seeing a Physician or don't have a family Physician which makes things more difficult as they might have no medical history. In many cases, it will take time for the family to start the conversation about flexible home care support options. Many seniors who have subsided home health care support visits at home usually don't get consistent and long enough home care visits which are enough to help them maintain their independence as long as their health allows it.
By bringing in an experienced & knowledgeable private home care professional for an in-home care consultation, you have done the first step towards helping yourself or a loved one. In some situations, especially when the health situation and or mobility has declined rapidly, the person might no longer be able to live at home independently any longer even hourly, overnight, and or even 24 hrs. home care support due to the financial situation.
In some cases, a transition to Assisted Living might be the best suitable solution. Most seniors wish to age in place in their own homes. Assisted living provides a healthy routine with daily tasks & activities, regular meals as well as healthy social aspects. Most Assisted Living Residences provide in-home health care aides, and there is the option to hire one from a private home care agency.
Seniors who do live in Independent Living Residences and start declining rapidly in cognitive & physical health and mobility, might not be able to remain in an Assisted Living Residence and might need to transfer into Long Term Care, also known as a nursing home, within 24 hrs. Care around the clock, either under private or subsidized care.
Seniors Choice For Care offers a beneficial transition support service to seniors & families to assist and guide them on the challenging pathways to Assisted Living or to Long Term Care - when care needs change and home care support is no longer an option.