Old people need help and attention around the clock. And their relatives are often forced to combine work, and family life and help their seniors, literally torn between them. The situation can be complicated by the fact that a senior may have certain diseases, and therefore the quality of care should be even better. There are two options for resolving the issue of caring for a loved one – a caregiver and a nursing home. In this article, we’ll consider the pros and cons of each option so you can make the right choice while choosing quality senior care in Nassau County.

Things you should know about a caregiver

Most often, nurses are hired for bedridden patients, but this approach is often inherently wrong. Old people can keep a clear mind, but lose the skill of self-care, a senior simply may not have the strength. The sooner he has a caregiver, the less risk he will have of accidental injury, the development of any chronic disease, or simply depression. This is especially important if you cannot visit your old relative regularly and as often as possible.

In this case, the duties of a caregiver do not include many of the functions required for caring for a bedridden patient (for example, sanitary and hygienic procedures), so you will have to pay such an assistant less. Typically, for such patients, caregivers need to:

  • brighten up the leisure and loneliness of a senior;
  • help a senior with cooking, and cleaning the apartment;
  • if necessary, provide a senior with psychological assistance;
  • stimulate the physical activity of a senior;
  • accompany a senior on walks.

So, most often, caregivers are hired for:

  • people with chronic or degenerative diseases;
  • bedridden patients;
  • people with a disability;
  • people who require daily procedures and injections;
  • people who require regular monitoring of vital body functions;
  • patients who have memory impairments;
  • people who need palliative care.

The caregiver may be visiting or residential. In the first case, the caregiver will be with your old relative for part of the day, for example, while you are at work. In the second case, the caregiver will constantly be with a senior. Usually, a caregiver lives in a separate room or apartment.

If your relative is sick, it is advisable to invite a caregiver with medical education as a nurse, who, if necessary, can provide him with emergency medical care.

Typically, the duties of a caregiver include the following actions:

  • assistance in bathing an old patient;
  • changing his bed linen, dressing the patient;
  • assistance in taking food, if necessary – feeding the patient;
  • control over taking medications and carrying out all necessary procedures (dressings, injections);
  • prevention of bedsores;
  • physiotherapy exercises;
  • control over all vital signs (measurement of pressure, temperature, blood sugar);
  • assistance in the patient’s leisure activities (reading books to him, assistance in watching television, communication).

Benefits for a family that hires a caregiver to care for their old relative

A caregiver does not prescribe drugs and cannot change the treatment prescribed by the doctor. But this worker will strictly carry out all prescribed treatments and will not miss taking medications or performing procedures.

It is possible to invite a caregiver for certain, prearranged hours, with the condition that the rest of the time the family members themselves take care of the patient. In this case, the family saves a lot of money.

There is no need to invite a specialist to perform medical procedures, as you can hire a caregiver with medical education who will independently do injections, massages, and other manipulations prescribed by the doctor. Moreover, the patient’s family has constant access to an old relative.

Possible disadvantages of hiring a caregiver 

One of the most common problems is the change in family life, the constant presence of a stranger. Not everyone experiences comfort in this case.

All family members understand that their old relative is seriously ill and may die at any moment. But, in the event of his death, many begin to blame the caregiver for the lack of proper control and themselves for entrusting the care of a close relative to an outsider. Of course, there are cases when patients die due to the negligence of caregivers, but more often, after all, caregivers brighten up the last days of the seniors, making them as comfortable as possible.

The caregiver treats the senior cruelly. Yes, it happens. But sometimes old patients themselves are capricious and fastidious, and their complaints about the caregiver are greatly exaggerated. There are times when old people do this out of spite or revenge, more often because they simply miss their children and grandchildren, they require their constant attention.

There are cases when the invited caregiver is dishonest or neglects his duties, at the first suspicion it is better to part with such a worker.

The nurse may get sick, or not come to work for other reasons. In this case, you will have to urgently look for someone else.

Private nursing home

The second common option is a private nursing home neglect. The stay of an old person in a private nursing home requires a fairly large financial investment. On the other hand, you will be calm for your relative, as reliable specialists are looking after him.

Advantages of a nursing home:

  • round-the-clock qualified care and supervision of an old person;
  • all conditions for people with disabilities in the nursing home (ambulance carts, wheelchairs, no thresholds, special furniture);
  • equipped places for interesting leisure activities;
  • polite staff;
  • payment only under the contract;
  • no additional bonuses or rewards for caregivers.

Disadvantages of a nursing home:

  • you will not be able to visit your relative when you want as visits are possible only at a strictly agreed time;
  • a nursing home is not always located close to the house, sometimes it takes a long time to get to it;
  • old people do not like separation from relatives, they can fall into depression, and begin to act up;
  • difficult to control staff.

Final thoughts

There is always a risk of hiring a fraudulent caregiver or facing poor service in a private nursing home. That is why you need to responsibly approach the search for specialists who will take care of your loved ones. Galaxy Home Care is a reliable home care service provider. The company approaches the selection of prospective caregivers responsibly, all candidates go through several stages of research. Clients of the company do not have to worry about the security of hiring an employee.