Finding a proper elderly care agency for the senior in your life may be one of the most difficult tasks to undertake. After all, at the crux of your search is the fact that you need to find the proper spot that will provide a comfortable, caring place for your loved one; one that also strives to preserve their dignity in the process. When you consider other important metrics like cost and location, it becomes clear that finding the right elderly care agency is a decision that should be weighed heavily.
When the time comes to consider elder care for your loved one, there are a few rules of thumb to keep in mind to make the entire process considerably less arduous.
Types of Care
If you are unfamiliar with the concept of elder care, you may assume that elder care facilities and the agencies that work with them, are essentially the same. This is an incorrect assumption. There are various levels of elder care that are available, each of which are designed to provide the loved one in your life the appropriate amount of health-related care, while at the same time encouraging social engagement.
Some of the care types include:
- Senior independent living communities – These communities cater to seniors that have very few medical problems and can more or less live independently. Seniors here essentially live in apartment-style living and have the option to enroll in custom-designed meal packages. These communities are typically referred to as retirement communities; a name that inadvertently emphasizes the level of independence that its residents still can enjoy.
- Assisted living communities – These communities allow for as much freedom as its residents can enjoy on their own. However, they are not completely independent, and they may need help with some of the more rudimentary functions in order to get through the day, such as dressing or cleaning. These residences have a medical staff on hand around the clock that are ready to spring into action if need be. These communities also host several different activities throughout the day in order to encourage sociability.
- Nursing homes – These residencies are designed to provide round-the-clock skilled nursing care in order to provide aid for seniors that require a high level of medical assistance. The residents typically share rooms with each other and are served meals in a central dining area. If they are too ill, they will have their meals delivered instead. Some nursing homes do have special units for Alzheimer’s patients.
- Home care – This type of care enables people to remain within their own homes while receiving the assistance needed to keep them as independent as possible. Like assisted living, home care typically provides aid in rudimentary tasks such as cooking and dressing. They also help with more advanced tasks such as paying bills or making appointments.
Things to Consider
Once you have determined the level of care that you need for the senior in your life, there are a few other things that you must consider in order to make the proper determination.
One of the bigger decisions that should be made in this regard has to do with price. Elder care can be an expensive undertaking. As such, it is important that those that are on a budget carefully consider the affordability of the elder care agencies that they are looking at. Part of this process is taking the time to see which agencies offer the optimal amount of care without sacrificing any level of the comfort that is essential for both you and your loved one.
Another consideration is location. Chances are, you may be spending a considerable amount of time at the location visiting the senior. This means that you will be rotating a lot of extra travel into your schedule each week. Therefore, it is wise to be mindful of how much time and miles you will be sacrificing when you look at each agency. It is important that this metric is pondered, because the last thing you want to do is to have the commute wear on your patience and ultimately, your desire to make it to visit the senior in your life as much as you would like.
One Thing to Always Keep In Mind
The most important thing that you will want to consider as you are looking into elder care agencies is the well-being of your loved one. Making sure that the senior in your life is very well taken care of should be at the forefront simply because they are people that are deserving of a certain level of dignity, regardless of what level of elder care they need. And considering what that senior has most likely done for you over the years, could you really do no less than that?