For many of us, it can be difficult to transition from living independently to relying on others for assistance. However, there comes a time when living independently is no longer a feasible option. If you’re concerned about your own health and safety or that of someone close to you, then it may be time to consider seeking extra support. Here are some indicators to look out for which act as signs you may need in-home senior care.
Signs to look out for
Unexpected weight loss or weight gain
Regardless of age, sudden and unexpected changes in weight can mean a number of things. Sudden weight changes can be attributed to inadequate diets, forgetting meals, lack of mealtime routine or changes in eating habits. Other times it can be a sign of possible mental or physical illness. In-home senior care can ensure you or your loved one are receiving the nutrition needed daily and maintain a well balanced diet all while helping with the preparing and cooking of meals! If weight gain or weight loss is a symptom of more serious issues such as depression, an in-home carer could be the first to identify this and seek the necessary help.
From the little things like forgetting to water the windowsill plants to some of the more important things like forgetting to take vital medication; memory loss is a sure sign of in-home care becoming a necessity. Exhibiting signs of memory problems can also be a sign of dementia. An in-house carer can improve the health and safety of seniors who are struggling with memory loss by making sure that the correct dose of medication is taken, the stove is always turned off after use and the doors are locked at night.
Decline in home environment
If you notice that you or a loved one is falling behind on daily tasks and chores, it could be a sign to look for assistance around the house. Limitations in mobility, forgetfulness, changes in cognition and other issues may cause difficulties in planning and performing household chores. Activities such as vacuuming or doing the laundry may become not only challenging, but even unsafe for older adults. In-home care greatly reduces the challenges and stress of housekeeping and helps create a clean and comfortable environment.
Difficulty maintaining personal hygiene
Like above with household cleanliness, old age can also lead to a decline in personal hygiene and appearance. An older adult may find it difficult to maintain their overall appearance, smell, and the ability to choose suitable clothing. This all may be signs they need in-home senior care. Previously simple tasks such as dressing and bathing may become harder to manage independently, but a carer will see to it that a well-kept appearance is maintained.
Remaining socially connected with others is crucial in keeping yourself both mentally and physically healthy. According to a study in 2013, older adults experiencing loneliness and social isolation face a greater risk of mortality than those who remain connected with others. Loneliness is linked to various conditions, including dementia and cognitive decline, depression and anxiety, heart disease, and a weakened immune system. Similarly, experiencing withdrawal from your favourite pastimes can have the same effect. An in-home carer is there to talk to seniors at home and can even drive them to church on a Sunday service or to a favourite café to catch up with friends. This will provide invaluable benefits to the health and wellbeing of you or your loved one.
Injuries and mobility difficulty
Slips, falls, and other accidents such as bumping into things indicate issues with mobility and navigation. Falls can lead to serious injury which is particularly dangerous for older adults. An in-home carer would be there to address these issues, help minimise accidents, and call for help whenever necessary to ensure there is no delay if medical treatment is needed.
Experiencing difficulty when driving
Due to impaired vision, hearing, and reflexes, driving can be a great challenge to older adults. Unfortunately, many may continue to get behind the wheel despite the dangers. If someone is having difficulties with driving, it’s one of the signs that they need in-home senior care. It can provide you or your loved one with transportation to avoid putting anyone on the road at risk.
What are the next steps?
Research your options
There are a number of different options when it comes to in-home senior care. Family members can help by visiting their elderly family members. There are also home care agencies like Age Up Health. It may be beneficial to leave in-home care to professionals trained in providing all levels of care tailored to meet your needs.
Find out what level of care you need
Once you have decided to have in-home care, it’s time to determine exactly what level of care is needed. Apply for an assessment from Aged Care Assessment Service (ACAS) to determine those needs. They will then assign you a home care package and put you on a waiting list. Then it’s time to choose a provider such as Age Up Health.
If you are showing any of the signs above, then it’s a sign it may be time to seek extra support from an in-home aged care service provider. Be sure to check out our In-Home Aged Care Packages which offer a wide range of services and options to suit your individual needs.