The concept of home is an incredibly important one to many people around the world. Your childhood house, the apartment you spent your early adult life in, and the place where you decide to raise your family will all hold memories and emotion. This is where you can feel at your most comfortable, and it’s where most people would prefer to pass away.
Death is a subject which most people prefer to avoid, especially when thinking about someone they care about. When they are nearing the end of their life, though, you need to be honest with one another, even if it is stressful, as this can prevent your loved one from being left in a position which they don’t like.
When someone is facing imminent death in old age, they will begin to receive palliative care. This is often performed in hospitals, hospices, and other facilities, taking away people’s choice when it comes to dying at home. Home care services can give your loved one the power to control this part of their life.
What Is Palliative Care?
As a body ages, it will become far more susceptible to a range of medical conditions. While some of them will be reasonably easy to live with when you have the right treatments, others will be impossible to control, and will eventually run their course. When a senior enters the final stages of their condition, death can be just around the corner, and this makes it crucial that they are comfortable.
Palliative care isn’t designed to heal a person. Instead, this practice will take away the pain and make the trickier elements of their life disappear, giving them the chance to share their precious time with the people they care about the most. It can be hard to achieve this goal if someone doesn’t like the building they are placed in for it.
Unfortunately, the possibility of home care isn’t always discussed when you’re figuring out how you’re going to look after a loved one. This leaves a lot of people unhappy, even though they have access to precisely what they need. As long as you’re willing to spend some time reading and researching, it doesn’t have to be this way. There are plenty of good reasons to want to go through this process at home.
Why Is It Best At Home?
The idea of being cared for at home may not seem important when you’re not the one facing the prospect of palliative care. In a position like this, small comforts can mean a great deal, reducing stress when their bodies are already under pressure.
Comfort: It doesn’t take much to make someone very uncomfortable when they are reaching the end of their life. They are likely to be weak, and will probably have pain in some places, making it crucial that they are in an environment which makes them feel good. Medical facilities rarely have space or resources to provide the experience which someone will get in their home.
Care: Care homes, hospices, and other palliative caregivers will often have a lot of people to look after. This will make it challenging to spend 1:1 time with residents, and can often result in mistakes being made. When you use home care services, your loved one will be seen by a small group of nurses, taking away the chance for something to go wrong.
Loneliness: It’s hard to entertain guests when you don’t have space for it, and the older members of the family tend to be the ones who are most used to playing host. Being at home during palliative care can create the opportunity to keep life moving as usual, with regular visits from friends and family making the most out of the precious time which remains.
Happiness: Having spent a good portion of their life in their family home, it can be difficult to transition to a medical facility and maintain satisfaction for a lot of elderly folks. Being depressed during the final months or years of their life would be tragic. Instead, it’s worth working to keep them where they feel happiest, especially when their conditions take away their independence.
Memory: Some of the most common conditions found in the elderly will impact their mind. Being in an environment which they don’t recognise can make things scary and confusing, with their home providing them with a solid anchor to help to keep their mind working. Most people would struggle if they woke up in an unfamiliar place each day.
Dignity: No one likes the idea of being surrounded by strangers on the death bed. This is a personal time in someone’s life, and this makes it vital that they are treated with dignity. Home care companies are used to providing for people with challenging needs, supporting their service users in a way which won’t make them feel like a burden. Striking this balance in a much busier setting can be hard.
Their Decision: While you may have to do the work to make it happen, it’s critical that seniors are given a choice when it comes to home care. Not only should they choose the type of care they receive, but they should also have the chance to decide the carers they see, making it worth doing plenty of research before you start hunting.
Accessing Australia Home Care
Once you’ve decided to find home care for your loved one, it will be time to start exploring the work which will have to be done to achieve this goal. Palliative care doesn’t last forever, but it can often go on for far longer than people expect. This is a blessing, but it makes it worth provisioning for the future from the very beginning, as you could easily find yourself running out of help.
Funding/Affordability: The work which a home care agency does isn’t cheap. Their employees have to be incredibly well trained, and will often have to work long shifts, with the costs being passed down to those who receive the care. If you can’t afford to cover the costs of home care, the Australian Government can provide support in this area, but you will need to visit their site to get yourself assessed. This sort of service has helped a lot of people to stay at home during the final months and weeks of their lives.
Research: There are a lot of home care agencies in Australia, and they won’t all be able to provide the same level of support for the conditions which their service users will be suffering with. This makes it crucial that you do your research, talking to doctors and scouring the web for information. If you need to speak to someone about the support you can receive, you can get in contact with Home Caring today, and you’ll be on the right track in no time.
Availability: While care is a business, there aren’t often enough companies in the world to meet the growing demand for palliative care. If you want to get the best home care agency, you will have to keep your eyes open, waiting for slots to open for you to slip into. Some care agencies will be happy to keep you informed when spaces become free, though this isn’t worth relying on when you are looking for help for someone you care about.
The Wrong Route For Care
As an alternative to working with a home care agency, a lot of people choose to give support to their loved ones by themselves. While this can seem like an excellent way to keep them comfortable at home, it will usually be a mistake and can leave families struggling for a long time. You can find some of the reasons you should avoid this route below, though you can also talk to a care service if you would like more information.
Boundaries: It doesn’t take much for a personal barrier to be broken, especially when someone has to receive care. People strive for dignity when they are facing death, and this makes it essential that they don’t feel embarrassed. If you have to provide personal care to them, it will be hard to avoid this emotion, and this can lead to seniors feeling depressed. Maintaining a parent-child relationship is just as important as their care.
Mistakes: While it is impossible to remove all traces of risk from the field of care, looking after someone when you don’t have the right training for it can be a dangerous game. If you make a mistake through inexperience, your loved one could end up in a difficult position, and the guilt which comes with this can be tremendous. Having a professional can quickly solve this sort of concern, saving you from the risk of hurting the person you’re looking after.
Your Memory: Humans have a knack for remembering things for a very long time. When you experience something out of the ordinary, though, like providing care to a loved one, it will be hard to stop old feelings from being replaced by new ones. This can paint an image of bitterness when you think back to your loved one, and no one wants to create this legacy.
Time & Effort: Providing palliative care can often be more demanding than looking after a small child, thanks to the size and weight of most adults. This can make the job far harder than you initially anticipated, taking more so much time that it will dominate the other aspects of your life, making it hard to do things for yourself. You will have different relationships to look after, but this will be hard when you’re throwing all of your time into one of them.
Preparing The Home
Before proper care can be given at home, the building itself will need to have some changes made, but the exact work which needs to be done will depend on the state of your loved one and the care which they need. Going to these lengths can be expensive, but most governments can help you out if you can’t afford it.
Rails & Hoists: Balance can become a challenge as your body gets older and your ears become less effective. Having something to grab onto can spur confidence in someone receiving home care services, making rails well worth the time and effort it will take to install them. It’s worth planning their locations to ensure that they are useful. If your loved one can’t lift their weight, you may also need a hoist installed, though this sort of tool is always adapting.
Wet Rooms: Getting in and out of a bath or shower cubical can be dangerous or downright impossible when someone is reaching the end of their life. They need to stay clean, though, and this is where a wet room comes in. By making the whole bathroom into space which can get wet without any damage, showering becomes a much safer game, and this is a great route to take when you’re preparing the home.
Considerations: Making life as easy as possible for service users is the top priority of most elderly home care companies. You can help with this effort, spending time thinking about the changes which could be made to their home to make their life simpler. A stair life, wider doors, and even lowered kitchens can all be installed, taking away the challenge which comes with living for so many people.
No one likes the idea of confronting their mortality and accepting the fact that they need help. When you reach this stage in your life, it can feel like you’re very much alone, even if you have plenty of people around you. This makes it crucial that you work hard when your loved ones are in this position. Exceptionally few people will be vocal about their unhappiness or discomfort during these times, as they don’t want to be a burden. This doesn’t mean that they aren’t suffering, though.