Many of us find that there are things we tend to take for granted, until there’s a prospect of losing them. Topping that list is the independence that enables us to come and go as we please, and to make all of the little decisions and choices that occur each day: when and what to eat, who to spend time with, and what activities to take part in.
When families begin to discover that their elderly loved ones may need a little extra assistance to ensure safety and wellbeing at home, bringing up the topic of in-home care can be hard. Older adults may feel anxious or even defensive, as they anticipate a pending loss of self-reliance. It’s important to launch the conversation about home care carefully, with sensitivity, empathy and compassion.
Morning Glory Home Care, providers of the highest quality Shiloh home health care services for seniors, shares some useful suggestions for families to consider when it’s time to talk with their senior loved ones about home care.
- Take your time. It often can take more than one discussion for older individuals to agree to give home care a try. Keep objectives practical, and understand that if the preliminary conversation is met with resistance, it’s a starting point. Permit your loved one time to process and digest the concept, and then try again.
- Compromise. Try to uncover specifically which services the older adult is in objection to; for example, a senior new to the notion of home care may be intimidated by the idea of having a caregiver help with bathing. Reassure the senior that there are a variety of other ways a caregiver can help, such as with household chores, laundry, and preparing meals. Starting with services like these is a good way for the senior and caregiver to get acquainted with each other and to work up to more services as needs change over time.
- Bring in a professional. Speak with the senior’s physician and share your concerns. See if the doctor is willing to put together a note with his or her endorsement for in-home care assistance, or to have a discussion directly with the senior and provide this guidance. Often, seniors are more likely to recognize the need for care at home when recommended by a trusted medical professional.
If your loved one is still on the fence about engaging the services of an in-home caregiver, it can be helpful to offer to be present for the first few visits until the senior feels more relaxed. Before very long, a bond will form and the senior will be able to appreciate the many benefits home care offers – and that it actually increases independence, rather than diminishing it.
At Morning Glory Home Care, we offer a free in-home consultation to meet with seniors and their family members to share our care solutions and to come up with a personalized plan to address any and all needs and concerns. Simply contact us at 618-667-8400 to learn more.