Planning for the future care of an elderly family member is often overlooked until a crisis hits, but it is crucial to be proactive. By pre-planning for senior care, you can alleviate stress, be better prepared for uncertainties, and ensure your loved one's input is respected.
When it comes to finding the best senior care option in Edina or the neighboring communities, careful planning, open conversations, and allowing time are key. Creating a plan in advance serves as a starting point and allows for flexibility as circumstances may change. Most importantly, pre-planning allows your loved one to express their future goals, wishes and long-term needs, which can shape their care plan.
Did you know that according to a recent study, 60% of families faced difficulties in finding suitable senior care options when they needed them the most? Unfortunately, many families wait until their loved one's health suddenly declines or a life-altering event happens, such as a fall, before seeking care. This change in circumstance can quickly turn into a stressful scramble for senior care services. Quick decision-making regarding care can not only put the well-being of your senior loved one at risk but also add unnecessary pressure to you during an already challenging time.
By pre-planning, you can avoid this last-minute chaos and instead execute a well-thought-out action plan that meets your and your loved ones' needs. Take proactive steps today to ensure a smoother and more seamless transition when the time finally comes for daily living support. Your loved one deserves the best care possible and an actionable plan is a step in the right direction.
At Comfort Keepers, creating a personalized in-home care plan is the first step that we take when working with a new client. It always helps when we better understand how our services will best align with the family's plan.
Ready to start pre-planning? Here are 9 things to consider:
Help your loved one create general planning documents
Having a written plan that includes your loved one's care preferences and available resources is crucial. Studies show that 70% of individuals who have a documented care plan experience improved satisfaction and quality of care. This documented plan enables your senior loved one to stay involved in the care process and maintain a sense of control over their own lives. It also helps ensure that their needs and wishes are properly communicated and understood by all parties involved, which can help to alleviate confusion in the future. By regularly reviewing and updating your loved ones' plans, you can adapt to any changes in their circumstances. Make sure you involve your loved one as much as you can in the process.
Consider services designed for independent seniors
According to AARP, nearly 90% of seniors want to age in place. If your loved one wants to remain at home when it's time for care, researching and understanding the various care options available can help you make informed decisions. From companionship to more advanced home-based elderly care services such as Alzheimer's care, there is a wide range of support available for seniors in Edina and the surrounding communities. Comfort Keepers, for example, offers services like personal care, companionship, medication management, and transportation to help seniors maintain their independence. There is a misconception that in-home care is only for seniors who need help with activities of daily living (ADLs). The truth is, that many seniors experience health benefits and a sense of joy from companionship alone. Companion care services can be started before more advanced care is needed.
Know the services available to family caregivers in Edina and the surrounding Minnesota community
If you decide to take on the role of primary caregiver for a senior in Edina or the surrounding area, know that you are not alone. There are many resources available and trusted services that can help you on your journey. You can reach out to care providers; such as us here at Comfort Keepers, support groups, and community organizations for guidance and assistance. Additionally, consider exploring online forums and caregiver networks to connect with others who are going through similar experiences within the Minnesota community. Remember, taking care of a senior loved one is a noble yet often challenging responsibility, and there is support out there to help you every step of the way. Also, remember that respite care services are available to provide you with a break from your caregiving duties if taking on the role of primary caregiver is the direction that you go.
Use pre-planning as an opportunity to look for warning signs
Take this opportunity to assess your loved one's safety both inside and outside the home. Changes in your loved one's routine or declining health can lead to a fall. Unfortunately, 1 in 4 older adults experience a fall each year and a fall can be a life-changing event for elderly adults. Take your time to look for behavioral changes, cognitive decline, physical changes, and other signs that may indicate the need for care and/or senior home safety modifications such as those provided by our friends at TruBlue of Plymouth and Maple Grove. Our ' "Is It Time for In-Home Care' guide provides detailed advice and tips on what to look for when assessing the needs of your senior loved one.
Download our Is It Time for In-Home Care Guide
Keep track of and stay connected with your loved one's healthcare team
Building a strong relationship with your loved one's healthcare providers can ensure effective communication and coordination of care. Attend medical appointments, ask questions, and stay informed about their health conditions and treatment plans. This information is going to be very important when your loved one begins using a senior care service in the future.
Encourage healthy habits and engagement
Promote physical activity and social engagement to enhance your loved one's well-being. Encourage participation in hobbies, community activities, and social events to foster a sense of purpose and connection. Consider hobbies that they can participate in when they are receiving care in the future. With the support of a caregiver, your loved one will be able to stay connected to the Edina community. Use the planning process as an opportunity to find out and document what activities your loved one enjoys, as well as activities that they don't enjoy.
Creating a personalized plan for care that includes activities tailored to their interests and preferences can greatly improve their overall quality of life, now and in the future. Research shows that individuals who engage in activities they enjoy are 20% more likely to experience higher levels of life satisfaction and well-being. By incorporating activities that bring them joy and fulfillment, you can capture hobbies and interests that create well-being, joy, and happiness.
Include support for yourself and your family as part of the plan
When planning senior care for your loved one, it's crucial to prioritize not only their needs but also your own well-being. This becomes especially important if you're the primary caregiver. Incorporating respite care into your plan can make a significant difference for both you and your loved one. Whether it's seeking support from a professional elderly care agency in Edina or the surrounding area or utilizing adult day programs, respite care offers essential relief, ensuring the overall health and happiness of both caregiver and recipient.
Remember, reaching out for assistance and prioritizing self-care isn't selfish—it's a vital aspect of effective respite care planning. Regardless of the chosen care solution, maintaining open communication is key for a successful and sustainable care strategy.
Regularly reassess and adjust the plan for care
As your loved one's needs change over time, regularly reassess the care plan and make necessary adjustments. Stay flexible and open to modifying the level of care and support provided to ensure their needs are met. Inclusion is everything. Planning should be done with your senior loved one's emotional health in mind. Remember, this is their life, and they should be able to provide input if they can on how they receive care when it is needed. When creating or revising their care plan, do so with open communication, respect, and dignity.
If you have any questions about pre-planning care for your senior loved one, Comfort Keepers is here to help; contact us today at (phone) to find the support and guidance you need.