Home care services can provide a wealth of benefits for many aging seniors. Yet it’s not for everyone. There are vastly different reasons why some people choose not to rely on these home care services and why others do use them.
If you or an elderly loved one is trying to decide whether or not it’s best to rely on home care services, the best thing to do is make a list of the benefits (pros) and disadvantages (cons) of relying on these services.
Some of the pros, or advantages to home health care services are that the senior will be able to remain in the comfort of his or her home and be safe. One of the greatest risks to elderly individuals who may have limited strength or mobility is that they could fall.
Falls in the home are the number one cause of accidental death among the elderly and it’s also one of the most preventable. While having an in-home care provider visiting the patient isn’t going to remove the risk, experienced providers can certainly spot high risk situations and then the patient or his or her family could work to find a solution that will keep them safe.
Another advantage of hiring home care services is that it provides some companionship to the elderly individual. Depending on the caregiver or services that are offered, the senior may get transportation to the store, to the senior center, or to a friend’s house so that they can continue to live and enjoy life.
With so many positive aspects, it’s a wonder why more people don’t rely on this level of care for their elderly loved ones. Yet there are some disadvantages, and they will depend largely on the individual and family.
One is that you may not know who you’re really hiring. If you hire independently (outside of an agency), you take significant risks, but hiring through an agency isn’t a guarantee of experienced, professional caregivers. You should do plenty of research on the agency you’re considering using.
Another con could be the cost. While many people have assumptions that home care services cost more than other types of elderly care, it’s not true. In fact, home care is the most affordable option, yet it can still be outside the affordability of some families. In those cases, Medicare may be able to provide some assistance.
If you’re still trying to determine if relying on home care services is the right option for you and your family, talk to an agency, doctor, or other medical professional and you’ll be able to gather more information which will help you make the right decision.