Updated: Feb 15
There is often a lot of resistance and hesitation when it comes to hiring senior home care services. Many people don’t like admitting that they need help with daily activities, and family members don’t always know how to broach the subject. Unfortunately, this means that a senior relative can go years without assistance, since it can be several years from first witnessing the need to acquiring aid. This can become burdensome for people in the family, who are not always well equipped to handle such needs and may not have the time to devote to home care. It’s important to be able to notice and acknowledge when it’s time to hire senior home care services.
Noticing the Signs
Loved ones might notice that there are missed doctor’s appointments or that medications are left untaken. You may have observed failing hygiene, household chores left undone, or house pets or plants that aren’t tended to as well as they should be. All of these can be initial indicators that home care assistance could be beneficial. More severe signs may be distracted driving, difficulty remembering names, dates, or addresses, or that already present safety and health concerns become more acute.
Although discussing home health care might be uncomfortable or embarrassing, such assistance can help encourage a greater sense of independence, aid with transportation and mobility, and can help to ensure that health care needs are met promptly and with appropriate attentiveness and urgency. A single awkward conversation can be the first step to getting your loved one the help they need.
Full or part-time services are often all that are necessary. Staffing agencies can often be the easiest approach, since they locate the caregivers, handle payroll taxes, and perform all administrative work and conduct background checks. This is a relatively easy way to find qualified and verified home health care professionals. Another option is that you would hire a nurse or other caregiver directly. This would place the burden of performing the background check, as well as verifying references and credentials, on you. You would also be responsible for payroll taxes, Social Security withholding, etc., which can often seem a bit overwhelming. However, it’s possible that it could also save you money. It will ultimately be up to you to decide what’s best and to ensure that your loved one’s needs are met.