Marshfield, MA Home Care News
No one ever said it was easy getting old. For starters, our senses – vision, hearing, taste, smell and touch – all decline as we age. Part of this is due to the simple process of aging, as normal changes in the eyes, the ears, the blood flow to our fingertips, even in our tongue and nose cause our senses to diminish over time. This deterioration is only further exacerbated by illness or injury.
In addition, as arthritis worsens and joints erode, our mobility decreases. As a result, many seniors find themselves becoming increasingly isolated. Many of the activities they once took for granted have now become a major production. Their world narrows and they find the most basic parts of life – getting out of bed, eating, bathing, grooming, toileting – increasingly difficult.
This is where home care can make such a huge difference, allowing older people to maintain their dignity and some degree of independence in their homes. While family members may want to help, a lack of time and knowledge often gets in the way.
Home care provides support in the following ways:
Companionship. Home care aides support their clients in both tangible and intangible ways. They can help them get around, whether it means providing transportation and assistance to doctors’ appointments or to the local park. They can read to them and play games with them. Most importantly, they are there to keep their patients’ minds occupied and prevent them from feeling alone.
Personal care. Home care aides are there to provide supervision when it comes to bathing, grooming, dressing and going to the toilet, all areas of personal hygiene that become more challenging as one ages.
Housekeeping. Even those who were once most diligent in keeping a clean and orderly home, find it increasingly difficult to keep it up in old age. Such tasks as vacuuming, cleaning the bathroom and doing laundry become the responsibility of the home health aide. Not only does this make the home more livable and cleaner, but it makes it safer. After all, a jumped up rug, a pot of hot coffee left where it could be knocked over, or a misplaced pet toy can be accidents waiting to happen.
Meal preparation. Without someone to grocery shop and prepare meals, the nutrition of an elderly person can quickly become compromised. A home health aide steps in to make sure the patient is eating well – which is not always the case for older people who are left alone to their own devices.
Medication reminders. For elderly people, medications can be a lifeline to good health – or a disaster waiting to happen. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, 55 percent of the elderly are “non-compliant” with their prescription drugs orders, and approximately 200,000 older people are hospitalized every year due to adverse drug reactions. For any number of reasons – vision problem that makes it difficult to read their prescription, hearing loss that prevents them from hearing what the doctor or pharmacist said, memory loss or cognitive issue that prevents them from understanding or remembering how often or how much needs to be taken – they may skip doses or take too many. The consequences of such an action can be dire. That’s why it’s so important to have a home health aide available to remind them.
This can be a very rough time for many elderly people who find their independence threatened as their senses and mobility decline. Home care, however, can make this period in their life a little better and a lot more manageable. If you have a loved one in need of home care in Marshfield, MA or anywhere in Plymouth, Norfolk and Bristol Counties in Massachusetts, please contact us.