The average lifespan has been on a steady incline as the scientific and medical fields continue to advance. Healthcare is also becoming more accessible and effective. As a result of these changes, many populations have a large percentage of elderly individuals. In fact, one out of every seven individuals in the U.S. was age 65 or older in 2016. This number is expected to reach to 98 million by the year 2060. While everyone is happier to live longer, this increased life span has also put a significant amount of pressure on Medicare, Medicaid and families around the country. Although there are many nursing homes and hospitals willing to take in older individuals, many family members prefer to provide at home care. This is a viable option for those willing to put in the necessary level of care, attention and patience.
Who Needs At Home Care?
At home care can be defined as the attention, both medical and otherwise, that allows a person of special needs to stay in their home. Without the extra effort of at home care, a majority of these individuals would have to be taken to a nursing home or hospital. Many families wonder if their loved one needs at home care or not. It is a delicate balance between health and agency. Nobody wants to join a nursing home or to become a burden on family members. As people reach older age however, their bodies steadily become more ill. The general rule of thumb is that an individual who cannot take care of themselves on a daily basis requires attention from another person. This extra attention is for their own safety in recognition that they are failing either physically or mentally to meet their own needs. At home care can typically begin before someone would need to placed in a nursing home. Although this care should definitely begin around the time an individual would consider joining one of these medical centers.
Types of At Home Care Offered
There are several types of at home care offered to people in need. These forms of care are designed to allow patients to stay at home while also ensuring that the proper medical care is delivered effectively. Nursing care is the most common form of at home treatment. At the request of a doctor, licensed nurses will create a treatment schedule and visit the patient at home to administer this care. Whether administering medicine, giving medical massages or wrapping bandages, nursing care covers many different activities. Doctor care is a more specific form where physicians will visit a patient in their home to administer a diagnosis or to treat a specific illness. These visits aren't typically routine in nature. Basic assistance care refers to individuals who come to a home and take care of daily duties such as cleaning and cooking, while an individual receives their at home medical treatment. There are also home health aides that help patients with their daily activities such as getting up and down stairs, taking showers and using the restroom. Many of these individuals have undergone extensive training.
Alzheimer's and Dementia At Home Care
Alzheimer's and dementia are still relatively new conditions within the medical field. Despite the thousands of ongoing studies, professionals are still learning a lot about these two degenerative conditions. While there is still no cure for either, there is still care that can be administered at home. Many individuals with Alzheimer's and dementia fear going to the hospital or a nursing home. At home care offers an excellent alternative that still ensures they receive the treatment needed. Services include personal visits, activities and overall supervision. Homemaker services focus on meal preparation, taking care of the home and shopping. There are also personal care services where licensed individuals help with daily activities such as bathing, using the restroom and more. There are also skilled services which focus on administering physical therapy and other medical treatments that are available. At home care for Alzheimer's and dementia focuses on taking care of these individuals who may be losing their autonomy due to these conditions. As there aren't many medical treatments available, the focus of at home care is to give patients a dignified life.