What Type of Senior Care is Best for Your Loved One?

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Senior care options in Metairie are ever-expanding. While caring for a loved one from home might have once seemed like the obvious choice, there are now an array of at-home and residential options to consider. And with a catalogue of potential financial support programs and benefits available, having your parent or loved one move into your home is no longer the only viable option.

Despite the multitude of avenues available, many adult children struggle with the ins and outs of senior care. Oftentimes, this is a result of an understandable lack of knowledge about elder care options, and how to match the right service to a senior relative’s needs.

If you’re the adult child or close relative of an aging senior, you might be thinking about what the next step is for your loved one. Senior care looks different for everyone, and what works for one family might not work for another. 

 

Identifying Needs

When you’re trying to settle on the right senior care for an aging relative, pinpointing what their actual needs are can be challenging in itself. However, there are some key areas you can look at to build a more comprehensive picture of how your loved one is coping.

Activities of daily living, usually abbreviated to ADLs, are the tasks everyone must complete daily to maintain their wellbeing. ADLs are often split into two categories: basic ADLs (BADLs) and instrumental ADLs (IADLs).

BADLs are the most essential of the ADLs – those that allow a senior to maintain their dignity and meet fundamental health needs. With a compromised ability to carry out BADLs, a senior’s health would likely decline rapidly.

The BADLs include things like the ability to eat independently, move around, get dressed, shower, use the bathroom, and maintain personal hygiene with tasks including tooth brushing, shaving, and nail and hair care.

IADLs typically have a more indirect impact on a senior’s health, but this doesn’t mean they should be ignored. IADLs include the ability to prepare, cook and clean up after meals, manage money, take medications as prescribed, and run errands.

To get a better idea of the level of senior care your loved one needs, look at the key ADLs and assess how well your loved one is coping with each. It might help to take some notes and keep track of how things are progressing over time, too.

 

Elder Care Options

If you find your loved one is having difficulties with ADLs, there are a whole host of senior care options available. These vary from small home adjustments and technological devices to residential assisted living and nursing care if your loved one requires 24-hour nursing support.

For example, if you decide your loved one is still living fairly independently but just needs some extra safety provisions, providing them with a personal alarm to use if they suffer a fall or sustain an injury might be useful. 

Never underestimate the power of small home modifications, either. For some seniors, simple things like removing clutter and rugs to prevent falls and swapping doorknobs for something more easily graspable can make the world of difference.

But if your parent or relative is struggling to live independently in their own home, try to start the search for residential assisted living sooner rather than later. By getting the wheels in motion early, you and your loved one won’t be forced into any rushed decisions. This means you can truly focus on finding a community that’s just right.

In residential assisted living, seniors become part of a community. They no longer need to worry about cooking, cleaning or running errands, and should receive all the help they need with personal care and mobility. Some residential assisted living communities also offer memory care support in Metairie and customized nursing care to meet their residents’ more specialist needs.

For family caregivers, finding the perfect residential assisted living home means freedom from worry about whether your senior loved one is coping. It should also provide peace of mind that they’re enjoying a fulfilling life in a sociable and enriching environment.

Other potential senior care options include having family members move in with them, home health services or a 24-hour nursing care facility. It’s worth familiarizing yourself with each option before deciding on the best choice for your parent or loved one.

 

Funding and Finances

Managing the financial side of senior care is often daunting for family caregivers, but you’re never alone. There are a number of organizations and websites you can turn to for support and advice. If you’re interested in residential assisted living, these communities often offer financial guidance for families, too.

And as we’ve already touched upon, many seniors are eligible for benefits to help pay for care.  From VA Aid & Attendance to Medicare, there are options available to help pay for aspects of a senior’s care.  However, these programs do not cover the entire cost of care.  Seniors and families can expect to pay privately for part of or most of the care required.  

Organizations like the National Council on Aging and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) can help you get an idea of what financial support your loved one is entitled to and what costs are and are not paid for, from prescriptions and healthcare to nutrition, housing, and transportation. Before making any decisions, take some time to educate yourself on the options available for you and your senior loved one. 

If you’re interested in residential assisted living for your loved one, Audubon Care Homes can help.  Contact us today to find out how we serve our local community by providing exemplary senior care!