7 Questions to Ask Yourself When Looking for Senior Care
Senior care involves addressing the emotional, psychological and physical well-being of an aging adult. Finding the right senior care can be overwhelming and confusing for families and seniors. If you are unsure about how to get started, what questions to ask, and where to find resources, don’t be discouraged. Here are seven key questions that you need to answer in order to make important care decisions for yourself or an aging parent.
What Challenges Are Faced by Seniors?
With normal aging, changes in your parent’s physical or cognitive health condition may demand further adjustment in their care needs. General aging concerns like isolation can be managed through home care. Whereas, situations like temporary illness, injury, or a progressive disease, like Alzheimer disease or dementia, may demand long-term care. Also, a fall, common diseases and injuries in seniors may require them to undergo intensive care in a medical facility.
Who is the Appropriate Person to Make Decisions About Care?
Family members may be confused over who has the authority to manage the care of a disabled senior loved one. This can result in conflict among close relatives. It’s crucial to try to sort out the differences and confusion through respectful communication to make the right decision. This will ensure your senior loved one will receive the care they need.
How Much Care Does the Senior Require?
You will need to evaluate your parent’s present health and living conditions to learn what decision needs to be taken. Take a step back to assess how much help your aging loved one requires with everyday life. Think about 8 essential categories:
- Family support
- Home safety
- Medical needs
- Cognitive health
- Personal hygiene
- Meal preparation
- Social interaction
How much assistance are they already receiving in each category and how much support do they actually need to stay safe and healthy?
What Services Do You Need?
Long-term care involves services that include various medical and non-medical needs. Usually, the caregivers involved with long-term caring will assist with non-medical everyday activities, household responsibilities, transportation, and companionship. Here is a list of long-term care services to help you assess what your aging senior needs:
- Meal preparation/feeding
- Medication reminders
- Walking/ambulating/exercise assistance
- Most non-medical assistance
How Will You Finance Care?
Hiring a professional senior care service will cost money, so it’s better to estimate future costs and to be prepared. Once you are aware of your aging senior’s financial position, you’ll understand if they can afford the required care or if they’ll need financial assistance.
Government programs like, Medicaid, can help pay for long term senior care. Also, consultations with an elder law advocate or financial planner will give you more information regarding Medicaid. Regardless of what you decide, it’s best to plan ahead so that the elder ones don’t get caught in a money crunch.
Who Will Provide Care?
Fortunately, there are many reliable aging care options and useful resources to help you with the senior care needed by you or a loved one. Depending on the type of care you need, you can choose from these senior care provider options:
- Licensed Agency
- In-Home Private Caregiver
- Independent/Assisted Living Facility
How Will You Monitor Care?
When you have to remotely monitor the care for a senior loved one, hiring a trustworthy care provider is highly recommended. A senior in-home care service will help you meet your aging loved one’s needs and ensure consistent care. The professional caregiver will act as a communication channel between you and your senior loved one and will take proper action when the need arises.
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