Questions to Ask: Signs that Your Loved One Needs In-Home Help
“I want to stay in my own home.” That is a frequently heard statement by many seniors, even if they may be having some difficulty managing on their own. And who can blame them? Their home is where they likely feel safest. They know where things are and they have their routines. They may have friends and family who live nearby, who add to their quality of life. But if you have concerns about your loved one’s ability to continue living at home, how will you know if he or she needs help, perhaps in the form of in-home health care services?
Here is a list of questions to ask yourself to help you determine if your loved one is as safe as possible and if he or she may need some extra help:
- Has your loved one unintentionally lost weight over the past few months?
- Can he (and does he) purchase appropriate groceries and prepare meals?
- Does he prepare meals safely, remembering to turn off the stove or oven?
- Does he complain that food doesn’t taste good anymore?
- Is he drinking enough water or fluids during the day to prevent dehydration, particularly during the hot summer months?
- Is your loved one keeping up with her hygiene?
- Can she do her laundry, bathe, groom, and toilet herself sufficiently?
- Does your loved one take medicines?
- Does he remember to take them and does he take them properly?
- Can he read the labels and does he understand what the medicines are for?
- Is he physically able to swallow them, if they’re pills, or use them as they are intended (creams, drops, etc.)?
- Is the home clear of clutter, which can be a fall or tripping hazard?
- Can your loved one call for help if she does fall and is unable to get up?
- Are there bars in the shower/bath, and are banisters and handrails on stairs fastened securely?
- Is there adequate lighting if she needs to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom?
- Have you noticed any cuts, bruises, scrapes, or burns that may have been caused by a fall or are unexplained?
- Is the kitchen clean enough for safe food preparation?
- Is she taking multiple medicines from multiple doctors and/or does she use multiple pharmacists?
Emotional, psychological and cognitive
- Does your loved one seem depressed or anxious?
- Is he staying social (if he was originally) as much as possible, be it in person or through the Internet or by phone?
- If he’s religious, is he continuing to attend services or programs available to him?
- Is he still reading or participating in hobbies that interested him before?
- Is he forgetful? Unusually loud or agitated?
- Are his finances in order?
The list may seem overwhelming at first, but in-home care services like those provided by Hired Hands Homecare can help you. Our professional staff can assess your loved one’s situation and provide suggestions and solutions for in-home help, so you and your loved one can rest easier. Our trained in-home care service caregivers can provide companionship, perform light housekeeping duties, prepare nutritious meals, and more. We can even provide coordination between various healthcare providers.
As providers of the finest senior care in Novato and the surrounding area, Hired Hands Homecare can help. Contact us for a professional assessment and see how we can help your loved one age with grace in the comfort of home.