When considering the nursing home option for parents or other loved ones, here are a few of the main advantages to keep to mind:
Better resources and equipment: Private homes simply don’t have the types of medical equipment and supplies needed to help seniors stay healthy. Many nursing homes are almost as advanced as hospitals in their ability to provide sophisticated care for patients on a 24-hour basis.
High-quality long-term care: Due to modern medicine, seniors now live longer than ever. While we’re thankful for this, longer life-spans often come with longer periods of late-life illness and disability. Caring for a senior relative at home is often a long-term commitment of many years, sometimes requiring intensive care.
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Should an Elderly Person Be Sent to a Nursing Home?
Older people might not develop diseases such as osteoporosis, arthritis and similar, however these conditions are easier developed by the senior population than by the younger among us. Sadly they are higher risk people and the caregiver has the obligation to help them reduce these risks whenever possible.
It is important that the home is a safe haven for the seniors. Falling anywhere in the home can happen easily so reducing the risks of them having an accident is important. When the person is leaving their home or returning back, particular care needs to be taken with curbs and slippery areas. Most of the injuries though happen at home, so this is why it is important for the caregiver or the family to ensure proper safety as well as making the room easily accessible.
Stairs are usually high risk for elderly simply because the older a person gets, the more difficult it becomes to go up or down the stairs due to arthritis and the inability of bending the knees as one used to do. Stairs can be poorly lit which makes them even more dangerous. In some places installing a stair lift should solve many of the problems that staircases present to the seniors. However having proper lit stairways is important as well regardless whether there is a lift or not in the house.
Proper lighting is useful in the entire home, not only around the stairs. Various corridors and tighter areas should have small lamps for ensuring that there are no dark areas in the home. Many people install sensor lights whereby the light will turn on anytime there is motion around the area. After a few minutes the light turns off automatically, which makes sure that there are no high electricity bills running due to leaving the light on all day and night.
The bathroom is another room in the house that needs special handling when a senior citizen is living there. Proper lighting gives an additional layer of safety in the bathroom. The place should be well lit and light switches should be easily accessible upon entrance.
As the bathroom floor tends to be slippery by nature due to the water splashed, regular carpet mats should be replaced with non-slip mats that do not move and slide around. Sometimes commercial mats such as those used in the kitchen can work quite well too. Also adding grabbing bars next to the toilet, sink area, as well as the shower is a great idea and will enhance the safety of the person using the bathroom. Even towel bars could be replaced by grab bars for added security.
Finally adding wide non-skid tape to high-risk places, such staircases, curb areas and bathroom floors makes the home additionally safe for elderly, and not to forget small children, who are very easy to fall and bruise as well.
Community Elder Care
On average, the cost of elderly health care is $5,531 annually. Family members not only provide hands-on care but often dig into their own pockets to pay other expenses which include groceries, drugs and medicines, medical equipments such as wheelchairs, toilet seat risers and transportation. Many times family members have to miss work and lose out on their income to take care of elderly family members.
Many family members take loans, skip vacations and often ignore their own health. Government must start providing tax deductions and tax credits to family caregivers.
The expenditures incurred for elderly health care is increasing rapidly and reaching astronomical heights. Elders have many special needs when it comes to health care. One is often left frustrated when there are gaps in insurance coverage. Medicare programs offer only minimal assistance for serious health disorders.
There are some programs that cover senior citizens. It covers hospital expenses and doctor visits, even if you continue to work. All one needs to do is pay a premium every month. These programs are popular among a vast number of senior citizens.
One needs to apply for these programs before one reaches the age of 65. In case you don't then one has to pay a high premium. One also has the option of enrolling for these programs after retirement.
The premium that one pays depends on your income and which company you will be purchasing coverage from. Senior citizens with low income are also eligible for the entire coverage under Medicare.
Prescription drugs which are used to treat a wide variety of diseases and illness are fully covered if one has a private insurance coverage. If you do not have private insurance, this could be matter of serious concern. Sometimes drug prices are simply not affordable, forcing the senior citizens to forgo other needs to pay for drugs.
Recent Medicare legislation has been a big disappointment for senior citizens, as drug coverage continues to be limited and fails to reduce the rising cost of drugs. Many seniors are forced to manage their medical plan on their own.
At times, the drug industry provides free drugs to the needy who are not covered under private insurance or any government program. Retail stores in the vicinity provide drugs at discounted rates. There are various medicine manufacturing companies that offer assistance to lower income senior citizens. One can seek out these discount programs if they have a financial need.