Find out about the pros and cons of care homes so that you can make an informed choice about later life care.
If you, or your relative, are in need of elderly care and your care needs are no longer met in your own home, it is time to consider your options. There are benefits to moving into a residential care home and, of course, there are some negatives to it too. As with anything, the more informed you are about both the pros and the cons, the more balanced a decision you can make about your later life care. Take a look at these pros and cons of residential care homes to find out if it could be the right option for your later life care:
The Pros Of Living In A Care Home
There are many benefits to residential care. Here are just some care home benefits:
There will always be somebody checking on you, or somebody to call for if you fall or need any help at all.
The premises are secured so no need to worry about intruders or unwanted visitors.
A Private Room
At the very least you will have your own room to adorn with your photos and a few treasured possessions. Some care homes also have entire suites you can occupy including a living room space, and even a kitchenette.
1.3 million people aged 65 or over are malnourished or at risk of malnourishment. In residential care, the carers will work hard to ensure your nutritional needs are met.
Loneliness can be as harmful for us as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and unfortunately 1.9 million older people feel invisible or ignored and are at a high risk of loneliness. Care homes offer companionship and the potential to combat loneliness with people of a similar age group, as well as potential days out and social activities.
Peace of Mind For Your Family
Your family will have peace of mind knowing you’re safe and secure in the care home.
Help With Medication
Care homes can provide help with getting medication, taking it and managing it properly, as well as help with making doctor and hospital appointments.
The Downsides Of Living In A Care Home
There are also downsides to living in a care home, here are some of them:
A Lack of Choice If You Receive Financial Help
Unfortunately you will have less choice in where you go if you get financial help paying for care from your local authority. You may even have to move quite far away from your local area in order to get a place in a care home that matches your needs.
It Isn’t Home
97% of people would rather not go into a care home if they become unwell or unable to look after themselves. No matter how nice the care home is, it simply isn’t home.
Loneliness Can Still Be An Issue
Unfortunately loneliness can still be an issue in care homes because even though there are lots of people of a similar age, they aren’t your friends and family and you may even have had to leave your partner to move into a care home.
A person can feel lost, displaced, depressed and even rejected if they are placed in a care home when they really don’t want to move there.
A Lack Of Independence
You will not be able to choose when you get up, go to bed, get dressed, or do anything you want. You may also struggle to get out of the home to do the things you enjoy doing. This loss of control over your life can be very distressing.
A Higher Incidence Of Falls
More falls and more hip fractures occur in care homes than when cared for in your own home. Hip fractures can be particularly dangerous for the elderly as recovery can be very difficult in later life.
The Next Step
It is important to research care homes carefully before making a decision, as well as other care options like live-in care or home care. Speak to your GP about a care assessment and speak to your friends and family. The more you know, the more informed your decision will be. You can have a happy, healthy and independent later life with the right choice of care for your needs.