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When aging takes its toll on our parents and grandparents, they need more in-home care and attention. Yet, many families hesitate to hire an elderly sitter or take family caregiving into their own hands. And one of the main reasons is that not many families can afford in-home elderly sitter services.
The findings of the Genworth financial survey estimated the median monthly cost of a professional home care aide of $4,160 in case of a 40-hours work week. Meanwhile, the American Association for Long-term Care Insurance claims that only 7.5 million adults have some sort of long-term care policy. That’s nothing compared to 70% of adults aged 65 and older who are highly likely to need some kind of long-term care.
Are there any cheaper options, though? Here are some alternative in-home care solutions to help you provide your grandparents or aging parents with peaceful and healthy living without hiring an elderly sitter.
Let’s consider the benefits and shortcomings of particular life accommodation scenarios.
According to the 2022 report by AARP, almost 77% of respondents opted for the idea of “aging in place” even during the pandemic. So there’s no surprise that most of us hear “I want to stay at my home” from our grandparents.
Some of the benefits of elderly living alone are:
They are used to their home and find comfort in their familiar surroundings.
They stay connected with people living next door.
They’re free to arrange their residence the way they like it.
On the other hand, single living will likely cause more harm than good if:
Older people suffer from mental disorders or experience cognitive decline.
They’ve experienced temporary or long-term disability, for instance, when going through post-stroke recovery at home.
They badly need assistance with routine activities like bathing, dressing, and getting around indoors and outdoors.
If your senior loved one needs full-time or part-time home care, make sure you arrange it initially. Will you need an elderly sitter all the way through? Well, it will largely depend on how demanding the treatment would be. Perhaps, it would be enough to ask an elderly sitter to take care of advanced medical procedures (physiotherapy sessions, syringes) and manage the rest yourself.
About 30% of elderly people in the US permanently live either with their adult children or within multigenerational households. Such co-residence surely benefits the caregiving as:
Kids, grandchildren, or spouses can assist their care recipients right away.
Caretakers and their dependents nurture their relationships by sharing common activities.
That said, serving the role of the unpaid elderly sitter is challenging as it takes about 37.4 hours a week on average. Obviously, not every full-time working adult can handle it. However, you can still keep up with home care without sacrificing your full-time job. Try splitting home care tasks with the rest of the family and monitoring elderly parents remotely, and you’ll likely alleviate the caregiving duties.
Do you want to provide your senior relatives with broader personal care services? Then assisted living facilities (AFC) should be your choice. Note, however, that, unlike nursing homes, these institutions don’t offer round-a-clock medical care for patients with complex health needs.
Conversely, AFCs serve mainly as recreational facilities. They provide independence for seniors along with qualitative programming, which includes:
Daily socialization with neighbors.
NOTE: Medicare policies typically don’t cover the cost of assisted living services. But owners of long-term care insurance can pay off residing at AFCs. As for Medicaid participants, they can pay for in-home elderly sitters and nursing home stays from their coverage.
To sum up, providing your loved ones with independent aging for as long as possible is great. Luckily, you can create a safe enough environment and keep track of their daily activities to ensure they do well independently. Let’s look into some best practices you should try.
Whether you plan to arrange co-residence with your senior relative or provide them with safer conditions for separate housing, the following practices will serve you well. So let’s dive into them.
That’s the starting point in making seniors’ living generally safer. Conduct a room-by-room inspection to decide what safety adjustments and precautions to implement first.
These might be:
Installing grab bars in the bathroom and toilet.
Covering slippery flooring with non-skid mats.
Revise and repair stair stringers if necessary.
In our guide on making a home safe for the elderly, we provide detailed instructions for every room. Check it out to get helpful insights for indoor safety improvements.
Home & community-based services (HCBS) for the elderly would be a perfect way out if your relatives live separately and you can’t attend to them daily. Just like elderly sitter services, these programs include in-home personal health care but usually cost less.
Besides applying for third-party assistance, a member of HCBS can request reimbursement if they serve as a family caregiver. However, the terms of HCBS waivers differ depending on regional policies. So visit CMS.gov to find out whether you are eligible to enroll in the HCBS program in your area.
Adult daycare is a great way to provide your senior loved one with social engagement within the secure and supervised facility. Daycare centers are represented nationwide and offer professional medical support, recovery programs, and entertainment.
We’d primarily advise these centers as a fallback for those looking after Alzheimer patients at home. They offer tested treatment programs that encompass occupational and art therapy, musical classes, and moderate physical exercises. If you need a break from caregiving duties, the daycare personnel can help you look after your older relatives.
These monitoring systems for seniors allow you to keep tabs on your loved ones round-the-clock. If you know little to nothing about them – don’t worry. Сheck our overview of selected home safety alarm products, where we compare the cost and capabilities of the most popular products.
Note that besides stock home alert kits, you can find tons of wearable monitoring systems for seniors. For instance, if your seniors live an active life, you can swipe stationary devices in favor of medical alert watches or smartwatches.
To make the best buy, make sure that the gadget features the following:
On the other hand, if you seek a low-cost solution, you can opt for wearable keychain alarms. These are also reasonable to buy as they are easy to hide, don’t look like costly devices, and won’t attract muggers.
Mobile personal safety traсkers can be an excellent option for everyday elderly monitoring. They are unobtrusive and provide instant emergency detection. So if you want to stay updated on your older relatives’ whereabouts and respond to health emergencies immediately, you should try safety apps.
If your loved ones are against having third-party elderly sitters by their side, you can still monitor their situation remotely. The AllsWell Alert mobile app ensures comprehensive personal safety tracking:
All family members assigned as emergency contacts get notified at once.
AllsWell Alert supports manual SOS-button and automated alerts triggered due to unusual device inactivity.
The GPS location feature helps you find out the user’s precise location.
The app operates internationally.
AllWell Alert app has a simple interface that elderly people can easily navigate. Help them stay connected with you and other family caregivers 24/7 – join the one-month FREE subscription. Try AllsWell Alert for your Android or iOS today!