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Holiday Checklist: Does Your Loved One Need a Caregiver?

Dementia • Safety Is it time to wrap your loved one in “round-the-clock” care?

Last week, HouseWorks’ marketing team shared tips for “Taking Care of Your Aging Parents” at the Hanover, Mass. Senior Center.

Attendees shared their stories of supporting older loved ones — spouses struggling after an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, mothers-in-law in New Hampshire, and that one aunt who at 94 can’t understand why she doesn’t have the pep she did at 54. 

Each felt like they were trying to hold on to the threads of a quilt that was unraveling.

One question posed was when would a family need to arrange for live-in or 24 hour home care. Not every older adult requires live in care, but many families could benefit from home care assistance. 

How do you know it’s time for “round-the-clock” care?

HouseWorks has two decades of experience bringing order into chaos through live-in and 24 hour care solutions. Here are three signals our team considers.

3 Signs Your Loved One May Need Constant Care

1. Falls

If you’re noticing an increased number of slips and falls, or notice that your loved one is frequently off balance, this might indicate a need for greater assistance.

Caregivers in the home can diminish the risk of falls and serious injury. They can help with mobility, offer a helping hand when a senior gets up at night, or even assist with physical therapy to improve balance. 

2. Forgetfulness

Occasionally misplacing the car keys may be frustrating, but it’s not typically a sign that Aunt Edna needs overnight care.

If forgetfulness has become persistent, or if the lapses in memory are dramatic, then it’s time to consult a professional — and time to think about getting help to ensure supervision and safety.

3. Feeling overwhelmed

  • Mail piling up, unopened.
  • Meals missed because making a full dinner “seemed like so much work.”
  • Calling adult children repeatedly to ask how and when a prescription is to be taken.
  • A loved one who is up 10 times a night … and now no one’s getting any rest.

These are all signals that your elder loved one is feeling overwhelmed and might benefit from live-in care services.

It’s not just seniors who can feel overwhelmed, of course. We were honored to hear the many stories from the group gathered at the Hanover Senior Center last week, as each person shared frankly the stress they were under while trying to make their elder’s life easier.

When family caregivers regularly are feeling tired, lonely or angry, it’s hard to provide the quality care an elder deserves. 

What Next?

What signals do YOU feel might indicate a need for live-in or overnight care? Please share your thoughts in the comments, below.

There are now more options available to families who need greater supervision and reassurance. These include technology solutions that alert you when an older adult gets up at night. And, of course, various levels of professional in-home care.

HouseWorks has had the privilege of helping families determine when their patchwork of volunteers needs to shift to a cozy blanket of live-in or 24 hour home care. If you’re wondering what options you have, please give us a call at 617-928-1010 to schedule a FREE 24 Hour Home Care Assessment