Transitioning to nursing home care can be necessary for some people with age-related issues or serious, chronic illnesses. Though nursing homes can have costly monthly payments, there are many ways to pay for this long-term care residential solution for many older adults who need significant help with daily life. A nursing home has several benefits, including safety and support, engagement, personal care, and sometimes caregiver support. Read on to learn how you or your loved one can get the care, safety, and comfort you seek in a senior living community.
Safety and supervision
Safety and supervision are key benefits of a nursing home. One of the primary services that nursing homes provide is supervision and safety features to keep their residents free from harm. This especially benefits people with dementia and other cognitive impairments who may need around-the-clock supervision. Many nursing homes have special dementia care neighborhoods that are secured and staffed with specially trained team members.
In some cases, a move to a nursing home becomes necessary due to the safety concerns of living at home independently.
Engagement is an essential element of emotional wellness. Many older adults suffer from the negative impacts of socialization. In fact, socializing can help boost a person’s mood and support emotional well-being.
Nursing homes provide socialization among residents, families, and staff members. They offer robust calendars of engaging activities that support physical and emotional wellness. Activity calendars provide a range of programs, from games to exercise, crafts, and music. In addition, some nursing homes offer specialized therapy programs like music, art, and pet therapies.
Physical care support
Perhaps most importantly, nursing homes provide high personal care assistance. In order to qualify for acceptance into a nursing home, the prospective resident must require help with multiple activities of daily living due to a chronic condition or physical or cognitive limitation. Nursing home staff members can assist with all activities of daily living, such as bathing, toileting, dressing, eating, getting in and out of bed, and moving around. In addition, they are equipped to have multiple staff members provide assistance or use assistive devices, like walkers or wheelchairs if needed.
Nursing homes can also provide support for managing chronic illnesses. They can administer medications and, in some cases, provide skilled nursing services. Skilled nursing services might include IV management, wound care, and catheter or ostomy care.
In many cases, the need for a high level of personal care triggers a transition to a nursing home.
For some, having a loved one living in a nursing home can relieve some of the stress of providing hands-on care. Caring for another individual can significantly impact physical, emotional, and financial well-being. The transition to nursing home care can provide caregivers with the peace of mind that their loved one is in a safe environment and meeting their needs.
This is not to say that the role of the family caregiver is over. Often, the caregiver becomes an emotional support and advocate for their loved one. However, having their loved one in residential care allows the caregiver the time and space to address their own well-being.
Nursing homes may also have staff social workers or contract with them to assist residents and families. While social workers are not necessarily psychologists or counselors, they understand local resources and programs that can help the resident and their family members. Whether the caregiver has questions about financial programs to pay for the cost of the nursing home, emotional support groups, or other questions about long-term care, social workers may be able to guide them in the right direction.
The bottom line
Transitioning to a nursing home is often a difficult time for both the individual and the family and loved ones; however, it often provides the care and support the individual needs. With the added safety of nursing home staff and supervision, engagement activities, personal care support, and peace of mind and emotional support for the family members, nursing home care can add value to the years in an older adult’s life and help them live safely and comfortably.