You’ve just finished talking to Dad on the phone, and now have a concern something isn’t completely right. Although it was a good chat, his lapses in memory were concerning. He reassured you that he is perfectly fine – that he is eating very well (despite the fact that he couldn’t remember what he had for lunch), taking his medications, and having no problem keeping up with the household chores. If you are looking for home care guidance to help assess the safety of your older parents, a great first step would be to schedule an in-home assessment from a reputable home care provider such as the Holderness home care experts at Live Free Home Health Care. This allows a highly trained, objective third party professional to talk to your senior loved one within the familiarity of home, while assessing a number of critical areas.
The Senior’s General Wellbeing
Throughout the consultation, the home care expert will learn how the older adult is feeling, both physically and emotionally.
- Is he or she lonely or bored?
- Physically active?
- Steady and balanced, or at risk for a fall?
Additionally, cognitive wellness is addressed.
- Is the older adult forgetful?
- Are there concerns with wandering, agitation, aggression, confusion?
- Does she or he seem capable of successfully managing the household?
Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs)
It is important for an older adult living independently to be able to attend to everyday tasks that fall into two categories: ADLs and IADLs.
ADLs include activities such as:
- Showering/bathing as well as other personal hygiene needs
- Getting dressed
- Using the toilet
- Moving from bed to chair and throughout the home independently
IADLs are less fundamental, but nonetheless essential to independent living, and include:
- Planning and preparing meals
- Shopping and running errands
- Taking medications as prescribed
- Making and receiving telephone calls
- Money management/bill paying
The Home Environment
The in-home consultant can likewise review the senior’s living space for any potential hazards and risks, such as:
- Issues that might lead to a fall: clutter, low-lying furniture, or cords in the senior’s walking paths, stairways without proper handrails, no grab bars in the bathroom, loose throw rugs, and more
- If there are fresh foods available that aren’t past the expiration date, moldy, etc.
- Whether there are any signs of accidents, such as burn marks on the counters or scorched pots/pans
- Unopened mail piled up
- Dirty dishes stacked on the counters, or other indicators of problems with maintaining the home to healthy standards
Based on the outcome of the assessment, the home care professional can prepare an individualized care plan which will outline the ways an in-home caregiver will help overcome any challenges being experienced. Often with only a little support, seniors can continue steadily to live and thrive in the home where it’s most comfortable, with enhanced safety to bring families peace of mind, while never sacrificing the senior’s freedom and independence.
Get in touch with the award-winning Holderness home care experts at Live Free Home Health Care to schedule a free in-home assessment for home care guidance for an older adult you love today! You can connect with us online any time or call us at 603-217-0149. For a full list of all of the communities we serve, please visit our Service Area page.