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What Are Your Options When You Are Too Old To Look After Yourself

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Find out which care options are available to you when you reach an age where you need care and support.

There comes a time in everyone’s life when they need help looking after themselves. This may be because of injury or disease, or it may just be because of old age. It is important to plan this before you get into a position where making a choice may be rushed or impossible. Making a choice and a plan now means you get to enjoy later life in the way you want to, and you get to choose exactly how you are cared for.

Knowing the options you have when it comes to caring for the elderly is the very first step to planning later life care. There are four main options:

Live-in care where a carer lives with you, visiting carers whilst you stay at home, supported living and an elderly care home or nursing home.

Live-in Care

With live-in care the care agency you choose will work hard to match the right carer to you. A detailed assessment period occurs beforehand where your needs and requirements are discussed. The in home care agency will want to know how you want to live your day to day life. This includes things you need like help getting dressed, medical needs and help with meal times, as well as things you want like company gardening, somebody to watch films with and somebody to accompany you on trips. In home care is all about ensuring your basic needs are met so that you can then have help living independently in the way you want, all whilst remaining in your own home.

Visiting Carers

This is where you remain in your home and a carer or a team of carers will visit at an agreed time to provide help with things like medical needs, personal tasks and other requirements. This could be once a day, or several times a day depending on your needs.

Supported Living

This is an option often chosen by those who feel they want to remain in a home of their own, but with support on hand. Often supported living is a community of homes where elderly people live together but each with their own houses. Some of these developments can be luxurious with community spas, swimming pools and other facilities. In a lot of supported living communities carers will visit when needed and other types of support are on hand. This type of care works well for those are still mostly physically fit and healthy, but who want to be in a community where challenges their age presents are supported.

Elderly Care Homes

Care homes are where a person lives in a room of their own, often with an ensuite bathroom in a building with lots of other elderly people. A team of carers works to provide residents with food, help with personal tasks and general day to day support. Usually a routine is in place that means residents do not have control over mealtimes or when they get up or go to bed. Nursing homes are similar but residents require medical assistance and sometimes more intensive support than those in care homes.

These four options are very different and everybody differs in what they want, what they need and what they can afford. Researching the different types and planning ahead is a great idea. This means you have full control over your later life and it means your family knows exactly what you want from the later stages of your life.

It is also a great idea to chat to family and friends to get the ball rolling with planning your future care.

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