Once the care needs of your loved one reach a certain stage you will need to decide whether to arrange home care or a care home. But how do they differ?
When deciding on the best type of care for your loved one it is easy to become confused between the different types. If your relative has complex care needs then the decision may come down to whether moving to a care home or providing live in care is best. Before you decide it’s best to determine how the two types of care differ.
How do you like to live?
Live in care, as the name suggests, is where a carer lives in the client’s home in order to provide round the clock care for them. This has the benefit that your loved one doesn’t need to move to new, unfamiliar, surroundings at a time when they could become confused and anxious.
A care home will provide your relative with a room or suite of their own. They will usually be able to bring some small possessions – photos or ornaments – to personalise their surroundings. It may be difficult to find a care home that has space to allow a married couple to remain together and, although there are some that accept pets they are rare and you will probably have to rehome any pets you may have.
Do you like people?
Care homes have lots of staff, each with their own job. There will be catering staff making and serving meals, cleaning staff keeping everything spick and span as well as the caring staff who will work on a rota basis. This can be confusing for some elderly people who may find it hard to keep track of all the comings and goings.
Live in care is provided by one or two carers who your relative can get to know well. They may undertake much of the cleaning and cooking as well as their care duties meaning that the number of new faces entering the home is much reduced.
Out and about
Care homes usually have nicely manicured gardens but, sadly, it is often the case that they are underused. Many older people have difficulty accessing them without the support of a carer and in a care home Outings too can be limited and will be to destinations designed to appeal to the majority.
Most people that provide home care services for older people will always be on hand to encourage their client to continue to take an interest in the world outside. They are always there to take their client into their garden – and may even lend a hand with the gardening which can be very therapeutic if your relative is prone to anxiety or depression. Trips can also be arranged to suit the needs and desires of your loved one, which may help memory function in dementia sufferers.
Your home has no set times when visitors are permitted but your relative may find themselves increasingly cut off from friends and family in a care home. Arranging care in the home can be more flexible and avoid cutting your relative off from their friends.