Seniors are finding it increasingly difficult to maintain their independence as they age. Age-related conditions such as cognitive decline and decreased mobility can make living at home without assistance unsafe or impossible, which has led many seniors to seek assisted living facilities when the time comes for them to leave their homes.
Many seniors today say that they would prefer to stay in their homes, or "age in place," for as long as possible; but with so many different challenges including dementia and decreased mobility on the horizon of aging adults' futures, staying independent becomes a tall order indeed.
But what about those who want autonomy? Many retirees have found themselves unable (or unwilling) to care for themselves enough due either because of mental illness like Alzheimer's disease or physical
As the population of seniors continues to grow, so does their need for in-home care. In fact, as many people know from personal experience, caring for a loved one at home can be even more difficult than taking them out into unfamiliar territory and it is often easier on both parties if they are able to live independently within their own homes while receiving help with everyday tasks like cooking or cleaning.
Caregivers, CNAs, and Home Health Aides provide all sorts of services that will make living alone much safer and simpler including companionship when necessary (especially helpful after retirement), assisting with meals or light chores throughout the day which allows elders some precious
The best part about in-home care is that you can stay at home. This provides seniors with the opportunity to live independently and maintain their dignity, while also receiving assistance from a caregiver who they trust.
In order for this service to work effectively, it should be tailored specifically towards your needs so that you receive just as much independence but less stress when living on your own again!
Home care is a critical part of caring for your loved one in their home. Below, you’ll find detailed information on the types of home care available and how to pay for it as well as signs that indicate when they may need this type of service. You can also learn about finding an excellent provider right here!
What Is Senior Home Care?
With senior in-home care, (also called non-medical home care) the caregiver is able to help with activities of daily living such as bathing and helping clients take their medication.
Caregivers also provide custodial care for elderly people by providing them food, assistance with dressing or walking, and companionship when they are feeling lonely.
Home care aides are not only caregivers, they also provide companionship and socialization for seniors. Family members who take on the role as family caregiver often use home care services when their schedules make it difficult to fulfill those duties or in times of personal emergency.
Home care aides offer a valuable service for adults who are not ready to go into an elderly care community. They also give those in need of minimal assistance the opportunity to stay where they feel comfortable and maintain their independence while receiving help when necessary.
What Are Different Types of Home Care Services?
In-home care is a popular form of senior living in America, but it can be difficult to decipher the different types available. There are three main types: basic companionship and light housekeeping; skilled medical attention administered by home health aides with specialized training; or medical treatment at home that your loved one receives from their doctor as they age.
This guide will break down each type for you so you're better equipped to find what's right for your family member!
Companion Care at Home
Companion care providers are sometimes called in to provide company for those who cannot leave their homes due to significant cognitive impairments or living alone. Providing emotional and physical stability, companion caregivers can make a world of difference by simply being there with them.
From dining to driving, "elder care companions" are there for you when you most need them. From time-to-time they may be able to help with light housekeeping and other tasks that would otherwise consume your day.
"Elder companions" can provide a broad range of assistance from reading aloud or preparing meals so the client doesn't have as much stress.
Companion care is perfect for someone who would otherwise spend part of the day alone and need light assistance. Companion care also provides a valuable social benefit, since it decreases isolation and improves mood. Warm relationships are often formed when they have consistent companions on the job.
Personal Care at Home
Home care aides are the unsung heroes of our society. They take on a variety of tasks to help people live independently in their own homes, such as grocery shopping and other day-to-day activities like toileting, dressing, grooming or bathing. But they can also provide respite care for families who need time away from tending to someone with Alzheimer's Disease or dementia by assisting them during these difficult times - all without charging an arm and leg!
Personal care assistants are a way to fill in the gaps, for those who need assistance with bathing or lifting. They can help out if you're starting to have difficulty but don't want all of the full-time commitment that an assisted living community requires yet.
Personal care assistants can help with anything from meal preparation to doctor visits. Most of the time, they will work in your home and be familiar with you or your loved one because he/she provides regular services for them.
Home Health Care
Home health care is a powerful alternative to the costly and stressful process of hospitalization. For seniors or those with disabilities, in-home caregivers provide medical services that are tailored for their needs without any unnecessary hassle such as waiting rooms, long waits times, or strict visiting hours. Home healthcare providers can even help people remain independent through activities like administering injections and assisting them with mobility devices they might need at home instead of going into assisted living facilities where there will be cameras everywhere watching your every move!
Home health care is a type of home care that includes skilled nursing or therapy services. Regular homecare does not include any medical assistance, so if you need medication administration, physical and occupational therapy, then it might be best to consider this option for your needs.
What Services Do In-Home Caregivers Provide?
If you or a loved one is experiencing mobility issues and require assistance with daily activities, there are different options. Two common choices for in-home care include home health aides and personal care assistants. Home healthcare aides provide help with light housekeeping, grocery shopping, meal preparation, medication reminders, grooming and other tasks needed to maintain safety as well as the independence of the individual they're caring for.
Personal care assistants provide more hands-on attention due to their background training from becoming certified nursing assistants (CNA)s who focus primarily on providing personalized services such as bathing, dressing/undressing anyone requiring some level of physical support; assisting them into bed at night; giving medications if necessary; changing bandages where applicable; applying ointments when needed.
Some of the options for in-home care and home health care services can be found below.
Home Care Services
Personal care assistants are not medical professionals, but they can provide tailored specific individual needs. Available services include:
- Assistance with ADLs
- Assistance with mobility
- Grocery shopping and meal preparation
- Housekeeping and cleaning services, including laundry
- Transportation to doctor’s appointments, social activities, and more
- Companionship, social engagement, and cognitive stimulation
- Medication management (but not administration)
- Respite for family caregivers
Home Health Care Services
Home health care aides provide a range of medical services that are more detailed and complex than those provided by personal assistants. Whether or not one needs any specific service will depend on their own physical condition, but typical tasks include:
- Taking vital signs such as pulse rate, blood pressure, weight etc.
- Monitoring water intake to prevent dehydration
- Giving medications/taking vitals including temperature measurements
RNs, LPNs, PT, OT and Speech Therapists provide:
- Skilled nursing, first aid, and wound care
- Post-surgery recovery care
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Respiratory therapy and assistance with oxygen tanks and tubing
- Assistance with maintaining and cleaning feeding tubes, catheters, and other medical devices
- Medication administration, including injections
- Assistance managing and monitoring chronic conditions
- Blood withdrawals
How Much Does Home Care Cost?
The cost of in-home care varies. In some cases, it ranges from $24 to $25 per hour for 20 hours a week or 40 hours respectively. That would mean around an average monthly price range of approximately between $1,950 and 3,900 dollars depending on the number of weekly visits needed at home with your loved one(s).
It's no surprise that in-home care costs differ from state to state. For example, the cost of 20 hours per week of home care can range from around $400 a month (Vermont) all the way down to just $463 dollars (Louisiana).
Financial Assistance for In-Home Care
When you're faced with having to pay out-of-pocket for in-home care, many people are afraid that they cannot afford home assistance. Luckily there is a multitude of resources available to help make the cost more manageable including:
Long-Term Care Insurance: The purpose of long-term care insurance is to help pay for personal assistance when the person in need can no longer take care of themselves.
In such cases, standard health insurance will not cover these expenses but some LTC policies may provide this service.
Rates usually depend on your age and how much coverage you purchase when signing up for a policy; however, be aware that there are many variations depending on individual circumstances so it's important to get an idea upfront as well as keep checking back with your provider if changes occur (just like any other type of insurance).
Medicare: Original Medicare does not cover standard in-home care as it is considered “custodial care” and not medical. However, it may cover personal care assistance if it is delivered with home health care services from the same provider. Additionally, some Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans may cover in-home care services.
Medicaid: Medicaid does not cover custodial care, which includes standard in-home care. However, many states have some form of Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) waiver, designed to expand the state’s Medicaid benefits to cover additional services such as personal care assistance. Medicaid does always cover home health care for those who meet both medical and financial eligibility requirements.
Life Insurance: Though one’s life insurance benefit is intended to be accessed after they pass, in some cases it makes more financial sense to access the funds early and use the life insurance payment to finance long-term care. This may be in the form of an “accelerated death benefit” from the insurance provider, or you may look into selling the policy to a third party for a cash payment. Look into the specifics of your loved one’s policy to see if this option makes sense for your situation.
Veterans Benefits: In addition to a VA pension, some veterans are eligible for the Aid and Attendance (A&A) benefit, an additional monthly payment intended to be used towards paying for long-term care. One of the eligibility terms is needing help with one or more ADLs, so most veterans in need of in-home care will likely qualify. You can learn more about the benefit and apply directly on the VA website, or apply in person at your local VA office.
Reverse Mortgage Loans: Reverse mortgages are a loan that one can take against the value of their home, essentially converting part of their home’s value into a cash payment while they continue to live there. The only federally-insured, and thus most reliable, form of a reverse mortgage is the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM), available to adults age 62 and over to help finance long-term care or other expenses. No matter which type of reverse mortgage one chooses, the loan will need to be repaid with interest once the home is eventually sold.
What Are Some Signs That It May Be Time for In-Home Care?
Challenges with Mobility
When your loved one struggles with mobility, it can be difficult to complete ordinary activities of daily living. This makes in-home care a much-needed help for those who need assistance getting around the house or out on errands and social visits. For many people, this leads to problems such as fall-related injuries or malnutrition which is why home caregivers are so important during these times when trouble walking becomes too tough an obstacle for our family members and friends.
When faced with any type of injury that limits their ability to walk, most individuals find that routine tasks like showering become more challenging than they would imagine at first glance due to how quickly everyday physical activity accumulates until ultimately reaching a tipping point.
Challenges with Hygiene and Grooming
There are plenty of ways to tell that your aging parent needs help. The most telling sign is when they start neglecting their hygiene and grooming habits, like not bathing or cutting their hair for a while. This usually happens because either the person has lost the physical ability as well as cognitive abilities, making them unable to keep up with these small tasks themselves anymore
Maintaining one’s hygiene and grooming is considered an activity of daily living. Many people work with a home care provider to assist their loved ones. Sometimes the tasks can be physically difficult for some clients such as bathing or toileting on their own so they need assistance from others. In-home aides often provide this service and also help stick to more regular routines, like shaving or putting makeup on every day.
The way your aging parent feels in a hug may also be telling of their declining health. You might notice that they feel thinner and frailer than before, or you have spotted bruises on them; these types of physical symptoms are signs to look out for when making sure an elderly loved one is safe at home
When giving hugs to someone close to us who's getting older, can help shape our perception as we take note if the person seems physically different from how they were months ago--say less sturdy—or has new wounds such as cuts and scrapes. These changes could signify that there’s some kind of problem going on in terms of not only emotional but mental acuity (such as forgetfulness).
It is common for people to forget things from time to time. But if you or your loved one experience increasing incidents of memory loss, they may need home care help with their tasks and activities. A physician can determine whether it's a sign of cognitive decline by assessing the extent that forgetting has impacted day-to-day functioning and well-being. Working with an in-home caregiver will ensure that important tasks are completed while providing assistance where needed.
Challenges with Housekeeping
A person with an aging parent may notice that their care is struggling to keep up at home. They could have mobility issues, cognitive decline or even depression- all of which are common signs they need some help around the house.
Your loved one may be struggling to keep up with the housework if they are neglecting their home. This could include dust, dirt, or grime in areas that were previously clean, excessive clutter from junk, and other things piled on surfaces such as countertops and tables; piles of dirty dishes in some rooms rather than just the kitchen sink area for example. In-home caregivers can help your loved one by providing assistance like cleaning counters & appliances (keeps them less cluttered), sweeping floors/vacuuming rugs so there is a more orderly appearance throughout the entire space including bedrooms where many piles will accumulate.
Loss of Interest
Have you noticed that your loved one no longer seems to enjoy many of the hobbies they once loved? Maybe their previously well-tended backyard garden has been neglected, or their weekly card game with friends has gone by the wayside. You might notice that your mom or dad is even giving up more sedentary activities such as knitting, reading, and watching a favorite TV show.
An aging parent who was formerly quite social may become withdrawn from society in general.
Social isolation can have negative effects on physical health as well; it could be dangerous for someone like an aging person who relies heavily on others for help if prevented from having contact with them at all times when needed.
Losing interest in hobbies and activities can be a sign of numerous underlying problems, notably depression. While an in-home caregiver won’t be able to solve these medical or mental health issues, they can help ensure that your loved one adheres to treatment plans, has regular social interaction and companionship, and can provide much-needed help so that your mom or dad is still able to enjoy favorite pastimes.
How Do I Find an In-Home Caregiver?
When you start the process of finding in-home help for a loved one, doing some homework on your candidates will not only ensure that they are trustworthy and reliable aides; it can also be an emotional relief. You should take caution when going about this search by using ApprovedSeniorNetwork.com's expansive directory to find such professionals near you who have been vetted by other families before so as to know what kind of aide is best suited for your needs.
ApprovedSeniorNetwork.com offers a comprehensive directory of both non-medical home care agencies and home health agencies. You can search the directory to find local agencies and read consumer reviews about their quality of care.
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