Like many seniors, my 94-year-old father always says that he doesn’t want to be a burden on his family, but at the same time, he is adamant about staying in his own home, even though as time passes, he requires more and more help from others. With part-time home care, he is doing quite well for a person his age. The few times when he has had to be hospitalized or spend time in a rehab center, he becomes depressed and often disoriented. We can see the benefits to his health when he is at home, and we certainly feel the benefits of having home care specialists help with the tasks required to keep him happy and healthy at home.
Who benefits from in-home care?
The elderly are not the only people who need and can benefit from specialized home care. People of all ages, even children, can benefit from being cared for at home vs. being in a hospital or care center. Some are recovering from surgery or have a chronic condition that requires ongoing care. Others need certain therapies or complex medical monitoring one might think are only available in a hospital or rehab center. Some simply could use some assistance with activities of daily living, like bathing or administering medication. Some need part-time care, while others need a trained aide or nurse present around-the-clock. Everyone’s situation is different, but almost everyone in need of help can benefit from being cared for at home, and their family caregivers benefit, too.
What are some specific benefits?
In addition to being the type of care most patients prefer, the following are just some of the proven benefits of being cared for at home:
- Decreases the risk of infection compared to care in hospitals or care centers.
- The development of ongoing strategies to improve the patients’ quality of life can be tailored to the needs of the individual.
- Speeds up recuperation from illness, injury, or surgical procedures. As shown by medical studies, patients heal more quickly and successfully when recovering at home versus in a medical facility. There are also fewer incidents of re-hospitalization.
- Familiar surroundings and the comfort of family and friends nearby provides companionship and helps people not only medically, but emotionally.
- Extends longevity, as proved by schools of nursing and government agency studies.
- Provides patients with a greater sense of privacy, dignity and personal choices regarding meals, schedules, and other activities of daily living.
- Improves many patients’ ability to walk or move around, get in and out of bed, have less pain when moving around, improve bladder control and get better at bathing and personal hygiene.
- Reduces stress for the client and their loved ones. The patient and his or her family are taught to participate in the health care that is needed. They learn how to get well and stay way.
- Saves money because in most situations in-home care is a more affordable option than hospitalization or nursing home placement to deal with comparable health problems.
- In-home care frees up family caregivers to carry on with their life priorities like work, childcare, spousal relationship, and self-care.
Where to turn for Help?
When a loved one is aging and has an acute or chronic illness, it is critical that they receive appropriate nutrition, medication, rest, and medical supervision. For many people, home health care workers can help loved ones maintain their level of wellness for a longer period of time. Furthermore, with in-home care, families that are unable to serve as primary caregivers have the benefit of knowing that their loved ones are receiving professional, compassionate, and personalized care in the convenience of their own homes.
Technology now has developed to the point where many services, once only available in a hospital, can be offered at home. By and large, employees of home care agencies look at their work, not as a job or profession, but as a calling. Home care workers are highly trained and dedicated to their work. A typical home health care visit occurs in a two-to-four-hour block of time two or three times a week, but sometimes, extended critical care is needed and can be difficult to find.
Many North Dakota families are finding that Dakota Home Care can provide services that other home care agencies cannot. They assign an experienced case manager and registered nurse to visit the home, evaluate and assess the person’s needs and work with the client, family and home care staff to draft and implement an individualized plan of care, either part-time or around-the-clock. To inquire about in home care from Dakota Home Care for yourself or a loved one, call (877) 691-0095.
By Marti Lythgoe, Freelance Writer