Making A Choice When It Comes To Care Homes

Our parents. They look after us when we are young, and then we look after them when they grow old. Unfortunately, for some of us, our parents and loved ones growing old leaves us facing some difficult decisions about their care, particularly if they become infirm, vulnerable or develop an illness like dementia or Alzheimers which leaves them unable to care for themselves.

In a perfect world. we would have big enough homes and not have to work so that we would be able to give our loved ones the level of care and attention that they need. But for many people, this is just not the case. That is when the necessity of a care or nursing home of the kind you can find at may become something you need to consider.

I speak from experience. I was in my early 20s and still living at home when my nan was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Alzheimers disease. At this point my nan lived in her own home, alone after being widowed two years earlier. But she was becoming increasingly disorientated, leaving the house in the middle of the night to look for my grandad, being found in a bus stop in her nightdress early one morning, and generally becoming more confused and unable to look after herself. The problem was that there was no room in our house, and my mom had no other siblings. After consultations with doctors and care workers a decision was made that my nan needed the support and safety of a nursing home. We found one that had a good reputation and my nan stayed there for the last two years of her life.

Care and nursing homes provide a safe and secure environment for our loved ones when they can no longer look after themselves. They can range from environments for people who may still have all their faculties, but are vulnerable and lonely and would benefit from having help and company in their day to day life. Nursing homes may also provide help medical and nursing care for those who are suffering from both mental and physical illnesses.

If you are looking for a care home for a loved one, be sure to pay plenty of visits before making any decision. Speak to the staff about the level of care on offer, and look at the rooms and the facilities provided, and also any extras that may be offered – i.e. hairdressing services, music afternoons etc. Try to find opportunities to speak to other residents and their visitors in order to get an accurate picture of how you relative will be treated and looked after, and see if you can gauge their satisfaction.

Read through all the materials the homes have put together, and list any questions that you may have, and make sure you ask these. Read up online about local homes in your area, and check out any independent reviews if they are available. The main key is do not rush into any decision, you want your relative to be happy and secure, and don’t want to have to be moving them again, as this is stress and upheaval you can all do without.



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