What Will You Do If Caregiving Is Needed For a Loved One?

I was talking to my Dad on the phone the other day, and he was saying something about how my job as a mother is to take care of my daughter and one day she will do the same thing back for me.  He then went on to say how he raised me and one day I will be taking care of him or hiring nurses to take care of him in his old age.

After we got off the phone I started thinking about when I was growing up and my grandmother became sick and I often times heard my parents talking about what they should do to take care of her.  I remember my grandmother lived in our home with us, but both my parents worked full time jobs and so they couldn’t be there with her constantly, so they hired an in home caregiver.  I can still recall the nurse coming after I had gotten home from school a couple time a week. 
While I was remembering how care-giving worked with my Grandmother I thought “well that’s got to be the best option.”  So wait a minute what other options are out there?  I had to do some research, this is a subject I will eventually have to deal with, so I may as well educate myself now. 
It seems there are about 4 different options that depends on the needs of your loved ones.  There is home health care, which is what my grandmother had.  This option is super flexible because you can actually choose how often, and when you want a caregiver around.  For example for my Grandmother the caregiver would come on weekdays for about 4 hours during the day.  Home caregivers are great if you cannot be with your loved one all times of the day.  Each caregiver is different, some may be untrained simply companions, some homemakers, and most are skilled nurses.  I was also surprised to see that cost is much lower that I thought it would be, at about 43,000 per year. 
Assisted living facilities is another option.  Now, I will say that as soon as I read “assisted living facilities” I thought “nursing home” and old people probably hate those places.  Well, I did a little research and most of these facilities are pretty neat because residents are around many others of their age and can enjoy social interaction even with older age.  Another cool thing is that a lot of these facilities are et up with a pool, exercise room, hair salons, gardens, walking paths, and have ongoing activities to participate in all week long.  I think this would definitely be my choice if I could live on my own any longer.  Who wouldn’t want to play chess all day and meet new people your age, and of course talk about all your grand-babies!

Nursing homes is a third option.  While this sounds a lot like the last option it is quite different.  Nursing homes are mainly for short-term rehab and long-term care for terminally ill elders.  I do remember, my grandmother had to be moved to a nursing home because she became so sick.  I visited a few separate times.  It was somewhat comparable to a hospital, but I remember they also had an activity sheet for things fill their days with.  There sometimes is no other choice but here, especially if your loved one as grown sick.
The final option for care-giving is adult daycare centers.  Essentially this somewhat similar to child daycare.  When your loved one spends their days alone and can be susceptible to falling or getting hurt in general and has a hard time coping with daily activities.  Of course an adult daycare center also provides different planned activities to fill their days.  This option is probably best if like my parents were both working all day so this would have worked for them too. 
This may or may not be something you will have to deal with someday, but chances are it will be , and it’s best to talk about it now.  Although I will say my great grandmother is 95 years old and just moved in with her daughter.  She had been living by herself up until recently.  It was amazing, she was 94 and cooking for herself and taking out the trash, everything.  I’m glad to know that there are many other options besides the cliche “nursing home” that many fret about and dread to grow old and go to.  There are some really compatible options each that would fit well for others.  I will cross this bridge when it comes, but for now I do feel at ease knowing there are many options that will suit depending on circumstances.   


Speak Your Mind