David Lohmann

By: David Lohmann on July 5th, 2019

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6 Solutions for Taking Care of Elderly Parents

Family Members

With the Baby Boomer population reaching retirement age, many families are beginning to plan for senior care. While you may know there are solutions out there, you may not know which care option is right for your loved one. Fortunately, there are a number of great services that you can consider that will provide your loved one with the best care.

Before you can evaluate your care options, you first have to outline your loved one’s care needs. This is the only way to ensure the care option you select is best for your loved one. Ask yourself the following questions to get a better understanding of what you’re looking for:

  • Does my loved one need partial or all day care?
  • Do they need night care?
  • Can they take care of cooking, bathing, cleaning by themselves?
  • Do they just need a friend?
  • What is our family’s budget?

Using the answers to these questions, you can begin weighing your care options. Here are six solutions for taking care of elderly parents and loved ones.

1. You are Their Primary Caregiver

The easiest option would be for your loved one to just move in with you, right? Actually, this choice is a little more complicated than you may think. While you do know your parent or loved one better than any new caregiver, this doesn’t always mean you can provide the best care.

You may not be available to care for your parent on a full-time basis, especially if you work. If they have complex care needs, you may not have the expertise to provide that level of care. This is also a complete lifestyle change for your entire family, not just you and your parent. Consider how adding another person to your home will impact your spouse and children.

Despite potential drawbacks, the cost benefit of this option is why many people choose this route. Moving your parent in with you or caring for them in their own home saves the high costs that come with some of the other options for caring for aging parents.

2. Adult Day Care

Adult day care is typically used to supplement the care provided by family members. If you need to go to work or run errands, you can trust your parent’s daytime care to one of these centers.

In general, there are three types of adult day care centers: those that focus primarily on social interaction, those that provide medical care, and those dedicated to Alzheimer’s disease or dementia care. The option you choose is totally dependent on your loved one’s needs. While your loved one may be comfortable staying at home, adult day care is a great opportunity to socialize and gives you peace of mind that they are safe.

The cost for adult day care varies greatly nationwide. It’s also dependent on how long your loved one is at adult day care, the types of activities and outings they participate in, and the level of care that’s provided. The national average for adult day care is about $72 per day.

Learn more about the in-home care options that could help you take care of elderly parents. Take the Home Care Quiz now to learn more.

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3. Independent Senior Living Communities

Independent senior living communities offer a nice blend of living alone while having a support system, as these residents don’t require much medical care or assistance. Some seniors may still be able to care for themselves, but want to downsize and leave the responsibilities of homeownership behind. They have a sense of community with other seniors enjoying this season of life.

As with other senior care options, the costs of independent living communities differ based on the size of the community, where you live, and the space you choose. In many instances, the cost of staying in an independent living community ranges between $1,500 and $10,000 per month.

4. Assisted Living Communities

Assisted living communities are ideal for seniors who need help with the activities of daily life. If they’re comfortable leaving their home and need this level of assistance, this could be the right choice for your family member.

How does assisted living differ from independent living? Assisted living communities offer a greater level of care than independent living. In these communities, seniors have access to personal care services such as meal provision, medication management, bathing, dressing, and transportation.

The cost of assisted living varies, with one of the biggest factors being the level of care your loved one needs. The size of residence you choose, like a studio, one-bedroom, or two-bedroom apartment, can impact the cost, too. As with other options, the region of the country you live impacts price, too. The average cost for a one-bedroom apartment in an assisted living community is about $132 per day ($4,000 per month).

5. Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Communities

If your loved one requires 24-hour care, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation home is the best place to accommodate their needs. These communities provide around-the-clock care from registered nurses and physicians. Some seniors require this level of care on a short-term basis as they recover from an injury or illness, while others need this level of care for a longer season.

The cost of a skilled nursing or rehabilitation community is impacted by the length of time your loved one will require this care. For short-term care needs, the first 20 days of a stay in one of these communities are typically paid in full by Medicare. Once that period is up, a daily copay is usually required. For a stay beyond 20 days, the national median rate per day for long-term care in a nursing home is $245 per day for a semi-private room and $275 per day for a private room. This typically covers a senior’s room, medical care, meals, housekeeping, laundry, life enrichment activities, and transportation.

6. In-Home Senior Care

Many seniors are comfortable with their current living situations, and they don’t want to make a drastic change, even though additional assistance is needed. In-home senior care allows seniors to stay in the homes they love, while still easing the worries that family members may have about their health and safety. This type of in-home care can range from having a caregiver provide basic services like spending companion time with your loved one, walking the family pet, or helping with laundry, to  high level care services like assistance with eating, bathing, or other tasks.

In terms of cost, in-home care can be an affordable way of caring for aging parents. Most in-home senior care providers charge a four-hour minimum, even if you only need them for 15 minutes. However, many agencies are moving to the pay-by-the-minute model. Using an app like CaringOnDemand ensures you only pay for the services you need and the amount of time your loved one needs care. While the national average for in-home care is between $132 and $138 per day, the average for CaringOnDemand is about $29 per day.

Each of these options for taking care of elderly parents is right for different families. Fortunately, if you want your parent to stay in their own home where they’re comfortable, you have an option. In-home care both minimizes costs and provides the perfect amount of care for your loved one. This could be your family’s ideal solution for caring for elderly parents.

Learn more about the in-home care options that could help you take care of elderly parents. Take the Home Care Quiz now to learn more.

Take The Quiz!

About David Lohmann

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