Everyone has to get old. Unfortunately, our society excels in shunning the elderly, ignoring their contributions to our world, and not thinking for even one second about making their life better as they age. It is difficult for the elderly to adjust to change, but one of the biggest changes they often have to face is leaving their home and moving to a nursing home.
Most aged people consider moving to a nursing home when the day-to-day tasks get too difficult for them, or if they lose their partner and want additional company. While it is good that those who are interested in going to a nursing home have the option, a lot of elderly people feel forced into it. It is, however, possible to give them the option of staying in their home. Here are a few ways:
Safe-proof Their Living Environment
Family homes are fantastic when you are young and mobile, but can put a toll on elderly people especially if they are not designed for the need of people with reduced mobility.
Stairs and slippery flooring need to be dealt with as a priority. Consider installing grab bars around the staircase and steps. If the home features a steep staircase, consider an electric lift. They have a cost but will provide tremendous benefits. For the bathroom, make sure tiles are covered with anti-slip mats and install support bars around the shower and toilet. They are also lots of useful bathroom aids that can be used to facilitate movement and common tasks.
To ensure your parents or relatives are safe, you should also consider a personal alarm system that will alert a healthcare specialist if they have an issue.
Home Cleaning & Maintenance Assistance
There are many reasons why seniors are led into a nursing home. The main issue is home cleaning and maintenance. Due to a lack of mobility combined with old age, managing the daily cleaning and maintenance activities is often difficult, especially in large homes.
If you want to assist an elderly relative stay in their home, the first step is to provide them with the right assistance. Ideally, you would want to get someone to come in part-time and help out with cleaning tasks. For groceries, many stores now offer home delivery. For the garden and repairs, engage a handyman or ask a neighbor to take care of the garden for a small fee. If budget is an issue, there are often plenty of volunteers that can help”
Mobility as a Priority
Being able to access infrastructure and services is key for their on-going health and well-being. Depending on your elderly relatives’ health and location, mobility and transportation can become an issue.
The first element to address is general mobility. Crutches, walkers and mobility aids can do wonders and offer relatively cost-effective alternatives. Electric powered wheelchairs and scooters can also be a good solution to improve mobility.
Transportation can also become difficult is your parent or relative, so consider your options. Taxi companies offer dedicated services to people with reduced mobility. For eligible individuals, subsidies like the TTSS in NSW exist and should be taken into considerations.
Help Them Caring For Themselves
Personal care is often a problem at this age, which includes feeding, bathing, dressing, and meal preparation.
For the most essential tasks like bathing and dressing, it might be wise to consider hiring a carer for a few hours a day. The cost of a home carer can be expensive, but should still be cheaper than a nursing home and should increase the well-being of your elderly parents. For meal preparation, there is a wide range of businesses offered fully cooked and delivered meals. Alternatively, you can cook their favorite dish at home and share it with them when you visit. I am sure they will be delighted!
Andy works in the aged care industry assisting elderly people with their mobility needs. Andy is also a passionate blogger. Find out more about Andy’s activities here.