According to statistics, nearly half of all people 65 and older need a helping hand with daily activities. Most of this help, given to our parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles, is provided by friends and family at home. Studies show that nearly 18 million people require help with bathing, handling medications, and meals – a number that is expected to increase as the population begins to age.
According to reports, 29 percent of people over 65 reported receiving help with taking care of themselves or getting around in the previous month. Another 20 percent said that they had difficulty carrying out these activities on their own.
Common tasks seniors need help with most:
- Personal Care
While many folks decide to care for their loved ones at home, others embrace senior living communities that can take the lead to care and support their loved ones.
Mobility is essential to the elderly, even if it is just within their own home. Make sure they are properly fitted for either a wheelchair, motorized mobility chair, walker, or cane. You also may need to install a wheelchair ramp, hand-rails, and wider door wells to make getting around the house hassle-free. A hospital bed, shower chair, or lift may be necessary for your loved one to get up from bed or to be safe in the shower.
Your loved one will most likely need some form of medication to remain healthy. This begins with adequate medical care, such as doctor’s visits, dental care, foot care, eye care, and physical therapy.
Transportation is lifesaving to an older adult. If they can no longer drive, set up transportation to get to and from medical appointments and physical therapy. Having a caretaker or assistant who visits on certain days to take them to run errands, attend a social function, or go to the doctor is beneficial.
Personal care is an essential daily need for a senior citizen. They may need assistance with bathing, dressing, and personal grooming. A home health aide or another family member can help with these tasks if necessary.
Everyone needs proper nutrition to stay healthy and enjoy a comfortable life. Have a nutritionist or caregiver go over a daily meal plan to know what foods best fit that person’s lifestyle. Meals can be prepared weekly so that it is easier for the senior citizen to heat and eat a warm meal every day. Programs such as Meals on Wheels ensure that an elderly person receives at least one healthy meal daily.
Consider Your Options
While caring for your loved one at home may seem like a good option, many families find that providing the physical, mental, and emotional care they need is a monumental task. Senior living communities address all these needs and more, taking the stress off you, allowing you and your family to enjoy and embrace the relationship you have with your loved one.
About Maine Veterans’ Homes
Whether your loved one had a decades-long career in the military or served a shorter amount of time, they may be eligible for residence at Maine Veterans’ Homes. Our six Homes throughout the state also serve Veteran spouses and Gold Star parents. To learn more, download our free Eligibility Guide >>>