As your loved ones age, their mental and physical conditions also progress and increased care becomes increasingly important – conditions like Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Parkinson’s, Diabetes can’t be “cured” and progressively worsen over the years leading to increasingly frequent doctor visits and hospitalizations. In the US, there are approx 2 million seniors who rarely or never leave their homes, and an estimated 5 million more who can only leave with the help of others or after “significant difficulty.” The demand for professional caregivers is increasing every year and is expected to rise 40% by 2026 in the U.S.1
One of the most effective and cost-efficient solutions for your loved one’s care needs is aging at home with LIVE-IN CARE. Live-in care means that the caregiver lives with your loved ones in their home to assist them in their daily tasks. They are also expected to help the person at night with important or quick chores. But, the professional live-in caregiver is permitted to take rest for five hours per day. Studies indicate that, generally, patients who stay at home and receive live-in caregiving show improved cognition levels, reduction of depression, betterment in daily functioning, and lesser incontinence rates as compared to any other living facility.
Some families get concerned about their family’s privacy with a new person coming to live with them! But consider the benefits that a caregiver will bring into your and your loved one’s life. With the right live-in caregiver, your loved one also receives overnight or around-the-clock care in the home.
FEATURED BENEFITS PROVIDED BY A LIVE-IN CAREGIVER
Professional live-in caregivers are trained to perform tasks like:
- Personal care
- Physical support
- Emotional well-being
- Mobility help
- Meal preparation
- Assisted feeding (who have difficulty in swallowing especially in Parkinson’s, or Dementia)
- Assistance with other daily life activities and nursing services.
BEST STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS
For making the live-in caregiving ideal and successful, we recommend keeping the following strategies in mind:
1- Include your loved one while hiring
When hiring a live-in caregiver, personalizing the choice of caregivers to your loved one is even more important. They will be more welcoming of home care and live in care if the caregiver is someone that is a good fit for your loved one’s personality and care needs, and your loved one was deeply involved in appointing someone for their in-home care.
This will also give them some time to make themselves mentally prepared for the upcoming situation of being helped by someone new in the house.
2- Provide the caregiver with your loved one’s care plan
Make a detailed care plan to follow for the caregiver to avoid any kind of misunderstanding.
This will make it easy for the caregiver to gain insight into your loved one’s life, knowing their preferences, making a proper routine, and especially in building a good relationship with them.
The care plan can include:
- Your loved one’s brief history: age, disease, profession, family, religion, etc
- Their medical condition and requirement: accommodations, insulin usage, level of their cognitive impairment, appointments, emergency contacts, etc
- Medications: medicine dosage, timing, doctor’s instructions, etc
- Personal assistance: how much they need grooming, bathing, and other personal care help.
- Their preferences: what they like to eat, wear, their hobbies, allergies, etc
- Schedule: when they wake up or sleep, walking routine, naps routine, etc…
- Housekeeping needs: a list of all the daily and weekly tasks that will be performed by the live-in caregiver.
- Rules: to avoid any inconvenience and headache make rules that you consider to be followed.
3- Give the live-in caregiver a good experience
As a live-in caregiver will be living with your loved ones in their homes, it will be necessary to give them a good experience also, including things like: having their personal space or a bedroom, not disturbing them in their resting hours (until necessary), and most importantly giving them the professional respect they deserve.
4- Hire a live-in caregiver through a licensed Agency
Hiring a live-in caregiver through a licensed home care agency has many benefits in itself and proves more cost-effective. It will save you from many drawbacks of a personally hired caregiver.
- You will not have to worry if in case your caregiver goes for any emergency, they will arrange a backup caregiver for you.
- Your personal and precious items will be more secured as the good quality agencies do stringent background checks on their caregivers and carry professional liability insurance, should there be any unfortunate or unexpected situations.
- The agency will appoint the best caregiver for your loved ones according to their care plan. Good quality agencies take responsibility for the 24/7 schedule considerations for live-in caregivers and manage all the key aspects of coordinate care amongst a team of live-in professional caregivers.
5- Stay involved
Your involvement in the day-to-day process of live-in caregiving is important for better results. Communicate with the caregiver periodically, even unannounced, to check in from time to time and maintain a good relationship with them.
Make sure that your loved one’s care needs are being fulfilled properly. Ask them how things are going, and ACT to make necessary changes if they say this is not working for them! Good quality home care agencies and mature live-in caregivers understand the importance of getting it right for your loved one.
You can also arrange weekly meetings with each live-in caregiver to discuss important or evolving care needs, and discuss concerns with each other.
6-Extra precautions for proper functioning
Small adjustments can be made in the house to make the environment safe and run things smoothly for the family and the patient. For example:
- A bell or a baby monitor can be placed beside the patient for the caregiver to get informed when your loved one requires something.
- Separate your loved one’s items from the other family members for the ease of the caregiver and the patient.
- Label food items or shelves to avoid confusion.
- Provide your caregiver a notebook so he/she can write on it about the patients’ whole day activity to keep track and make sure you review this notebook frequently (at least twice a week)
- Make some rules keeping your loved one’s condition (Dementia, or Parkinson’s) in mind e.g not bringing food or items near them they are allergic to, specifying the volume limit, and other tasks that cause agitation or disturbance for your loved one.
Like any other new relationship, a live-in caregiver model can be awkward in the beginning for you, your loved one, or the professional live-in caregiver. It involves being detail-oriented and solving problems one by one to get to a smooth and streamlined experience. Give this process some time, work on it closely, and do not get judgmental in the beginning.
We, at Care Mountain, have been providing live-in care to our clients for more than a decade. With our proven and personalized approach to planning and delivering live-in care, we have served more than a thousand clients with live-in care. We are a high-quality in-home care provider and have served 3000+ families in DFW over the past 16 years. We have highly experienced caregivers available to support you and your loved ones’ care needs. Give us a call to discuss your needs.