According to the Families Caring for an Aging America report in 2016, there are at least 17.7 million Americans who help take care of older adults in their families. This is not surprising, given that everyone who ages experiences a decline in their cognitive or physical health. Many even lose the ability to function well on their own. Some even need care sooner due to an accident or an illness. It is for this reason that many of our elderly require home health nursing services.
If you have an elderly family member, you might be wondering how you can tell if your loved one has reached the point where they need professional home health. In some instances, the need is evident, like when their loved one suffered from a fall, a vehicular accident, or a stroke. There are times, though, where the signs are more subtle.
Ask yourself these questions to know if it’s time to consider getting professional home health services for your loved one:
Can Your Loved One Still Manage Self-Care?
Can your family members still take care of themselves without assistance from others? Some of the first signs that your loved one needs home health services are when they start to dress poorly and have poor hygiene. Men might stop shaving and wear messy clothes. Aside from personal care, they may not be able to handle tasks they used to do like paying bills, replacing bulbs at home, or even doing the dishes.
Are They Showing Signs of Memory Loss?
Losing memory as a person ages is often nothing to worry about. Everybody forgets where they last put their keys or their phone. However, if their memory loss is getting worse, for instance, if they forget where they are, who you are, or they get confused all the time, it may be something you should speak to their doctor about. The doctor will be able to tell you if you need to hire someone to care for your family member full time.
Is It Safe to Leave Them at Home on Their Own?
Are you confident that everything will be well and that they will not be in danger if you leave them with no companion at home? If you’re worried that they might fall down the stairs or that they’d go out and get lost, then it’s a sign that you need someone to assist them while you’re out working.
Is Your Loved One Losing Weight?
Unexplained weight loss is always a reason to get worried because it can be an indication of a physical or mental health issue. It may even be both. It could be that they’re slowly losing their sense of smell and taste, so eating is not as enjoyable as it used to be. It may also be due to a serious underlying health issue. Another possibility is that your loved ones cannot cook for themselves anymore, or they find it difficult to go out and do their groceries, and they cannot tell you.
Ponder on your answers to the questions above, as from them, you can determine whether or not it is time to consider getting home health nursing services for your beloved elderly. Remember that you don’t have to wait for them to fall ill or for something drastic to happen before you get them hospice care. If you believe that they require a professional’s supervision and assistance or if no one in your family can help them with their daily needs, then, by all means, contact someone from a reputable home health service provider.
Gateway Home Health is the most reliable home care agency in Colorado Springs and Denver that you can depend on to provide you with a team of trained clinicians and therapists who can provide excellent patient care to your loved one. Contact us today to know more about our home-based services!