It is normal to feel concerned about your loved ones as they age. Have you noticed their house isn’t as clean as it used to be? Have you noticed they have difficulties doing some everyday tasks? You may even notice subtle changes in their memory. This can be a worrying. Your mum and dad may even notice the changes themselves but may not want to ask for help at home.
This could be the reason why many of us start to think about getting some help at home so your loved one can remain living independently and safely at home for as long as possible.
Signs your loved ones may need help at home
There may be a few things that may be occurring that could mean you need to consider help at home or a home care package for your family member.
They can no longer manage day to day tasks
This is one of signs that your loved ones may help at home. Caring for the entire house can be a big job particularly if it is a large family home. There are many things to consider such as cleaning, grocery shopping, gardening, maintenance work. This could be even more challenging if they are living alone, and all the kids have moved out, leaving all the chores to one person. Another challenge your loved ones may face is not driving anymore. They may assistance to get to appointments, shopping and social outings.
Finding the right help at home adds confidence so they can continue living independently. Help at home services also free up time, leaving them more space to do what they love or spend more time with their family and friends.
They may not need help at home but may feel lonely
Your loved ones may be fine living on their own and not shown any sign that they need help at home but they can still feel unsafe or isolated. Loneliness doesn’t happen overnight, it could affect your loved ones’ mood and mental health over time. You may notice they aren’t seeing their friends as much as they used to. You may notice they have lost interest in hobbies or social activities.
Loneliness may lead to many health problems such as dementia, depression and anxiety and increase the risk of stroke and premature death.
If you don’t live close to your parents or are time-poor, you may not be able to spend as much time with them as you would like. This may be a good reason to consider home care package for your loved ones. With the right advice, they can participate in social experiences and meet like-minded people that share the same interests and hobbies. They may enjoy being part of a choir, or even joining an art group. There are many health benefits of art that can help your loved ones live well as they age. Or maybe they are keen to take up something new?
They may have started to tip or fall
As we age, the risk of falling increases due to decrease in balance caused by loss of muscle strength and flexibility. Falls are the leading cause of injury among older people. Has your loved one started to have difficulty getting around the house? If their house has many levels, it could be hard for them to walk up and down the stairs. Maybe they need some modifications to their house such as hand rails or ramps. An Occupational Therapist can do a holistic assessment of their needs and living environment, and a podiatrist can ensure the correct footwear. Depending on their needs, the right home care services can be arranged including exercise physiology to increase strength and conditioning, massage and nursing that ensure they live well at home and avoid the risk of falling. Technology and equipment to prevent falls can also be funded from a Home Care Package. The possibilities of technology are endless and smart home technology can be matched to a person’s needs and concerns so they can live safely and independently at home.
3 tips to help your parents get ready for Home Care Packages
Now that you know the benefits of getting home care for your loved one, you may want to do some research and preparation to get your parents the support they need. With your loved one’s best interest at heart, you can help them find the right services and the right provider to support them to live well at home as they age.
Consider their needs and level of care
First, you should understand how much care your loved ones need. If they only need some assistance to do work around the house like gardening or shopping, they may be eligible for Commonwealth Home Support, also known as CHSP. For higher needs and more complex health conditions, a home care package will provide more funding and access to an experienced and trusted advisor to customise and coordinate a care plan. Choosing a reliable home care provider is important in getting the right support for your loved ones.
Understand the process and what’s involved
There are a few steps to access support either through the Commonwealth Home Support Program or under a Home Care Package. First is an assessment with My Aged Care, who will then determine eligibility and what level of support is required. All this can take time, so it is advisable not to leave it too late.
If your loved one is approved for a Home Care Package, it could take up to 12+ months to get access to their funds as they need to be ‘assigned’ a package from the national queue. If you’re new to Home Care Packages, here’s a complete guide for you to understand the process, costs and fees and how you can get the help you need while waiting.
Have support along the way
During the wait for a home care package to be assigned, your family member may be able to access support and services through the Commonwealth Home Support Program. If this isn’t possible, many providers offer fee for service where you can pay privately and receive services straight away.
When it comes to Home Care Packages, it could be quite confusing to get started. But with the right support, a home care package can help your loved one worry less and live life confidently and to the fullest.
If you’re looking for a trusted Home Care Package provider, we are here to help. ACH Group offers customised and flexible packages that provide reassurance and support to help our customers so they can live a good life as they age. ACH Group also offers services through the Commonwealth Home Support Program and offers a seamless transition to a Home Care Package once assigned.
Our Good Life philosophy focusses on empowering our customers to keep them in control and ensures we deliver services ‘with people’ not ‘for them’. Call us today on 1300 22 44 77 to see how we can support your loved one through a Home Care Package.