When to Get an In-Home Nurse for a Loved One
Many people would prefer not to leave their long-time homes, even as they age and it becomes more difficult for them to care for the home and themselves. But when medical issues crop up, especially chronic or long-term problems, they may be unable to manage their care themselves. One option is to bring in a skilled in-home nurse to care for them. Here’s what to know about timing.
Ongoing Care Is Needed
When someone has a medical condition that requires ongoing treatment, whether short- or long-term, but they’re physically unable to manage it alone, that’s an excellent time to seek out an in-home nurse. This can cover various conditions, including wound or sore management, physical or occupational therapy, or medication administration.
There Are Signs of Self-Neglect
If you’ve noticed the loved one is having trouble caring for themselves, it might be time to bring in a nurse, even if there isn’t a significant medical condition. Signs of self-neglect include decreased quality of cleanliness in the home, weight loss because they’re not cooking or eating what they need, or it’s apparent they haven’t kept themselves or their clothes clean.
Noticeable Memory Issues
Remember that memory degrades with age, so some memory loss is expected. But what could be cause for alarm is if the loved one has trouble following directions, gets lost easily in familiar places, forgets or mixes up medications, or repeats the same questions over and over. More profound memory loss can make it hard for your loved ones to properly care for themselves. An evaluation by a doctor is the first step, and then it might be time to bring in a nurse to keep things on track.
When You Can No Longer Be the Carer
If you’ve been the caregiver yourself, you may experience burnout and exhaustion, not to mention that if you’re not a nurse, you may struggle with some of the medical concerns. Taking care of yourself is as important as caring for your loved one. A skilled nurse can ease the burden and provide a high standard of care. Moreover, it gives your loved one an extra person to socialize with. Many homebound elderly experience loneliness, so adding a new face to the mix can be a day-brightener.
Let Me Advise You
If you or someone you know needs advice about setting up in-home medical care for a loved one, call me at 610-718-6368.