As our loved ones grow older, we are often forced into difficult decisions. Sometimes we can see that our loved one needs help, and isn't able to take care of themselves any longer.

You may have noticed a change in your elderly loved one's behavior. Perhaps they have grown increasingly depressed, or have begun to forget important people, places, and events in their lives. Sometimes you will see them misinterpret information. Perhaps they have wandered off and gotten completely lost a time or two. This can be extremely frightening.

Assess Elder Care Needs

If you see things like this take place, you may want to think about elder care at home. These changes in behavior may be a sign of Alzheimer's or dementia, but they may also be caused by an imbalance in prescription medicine, dehydration, or a vitamin deficiency. It is important that you take the senior to be evaluated by a doctor before any decisions are made.

If you're lucky, the problems might be solvable by a change in medication or diet, or possibly a short term stay in a hospital. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case, and it becomes necessary to look into other solutions, such as senior home care.

After you and your doctor have determined that some sort of senior care is necessary, it is important to gather all the family members together. Emotions can be high at times like these, and you don't want anyone to feel like they didn't get to have his or her say in the matter. People can have widely varying opinions on the proper method of senior care. The very idea of nursing homes and assisted living facilities can often leave a bad taste in people's mouths. Despite your own best intentions, you don't want other family members to resent you for years to come because you made a decision that they didn't fully agree upon.

Elder Home Care

One form of senior care that many people like is elder home care. By caring for a senior in their home or yours, the senior doesn't have to feel like they are being neglected in a nursing home. There are many advantages and services available these days.

Some of these elder care services may include:

Companionship - A care giver can spend time with your loved one to help stave off feelings of loneliness.

Safety - a care giver can monitor the home and make sure everything remains safe.

Cleaning - A cleaning service can make sure that the home remains nice and clean.

Meals - Meals can be prepared in the home to ensure that the senior maintains a healthy balanced diet.

Medicine - A professional health care giver can ensure your loved one takes his or her medication correctly.

Transportation - if the senior needs to go to the store, church, or visit friends, he or she can be safely driven. This is also important and useful in times of emergency.

Physician Service - A physician can make scheduled or emergency house calls to ensure that the senior's health remains in good condition.

Hygiene - A special caretaker can ensure that your senior receives the proper bathing, grooming, and toileting that he or she requires.

Financial Management - Keeping all the bills and finances organized can become a daunting task for a senior, so this can be a big help to ease his or her mind.

Many More - Including respite care, geriatric assessment, and rehabilitation and physical therapy.

After you have talked things over with your family, it will be time to begin the process of finding senior care.

Read: Elder Home Care Part 2 for your next steps in elder homecare...


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