Aging in place. It’s a term thrown around a lot in aging health care. At the root of it is the idea that you should be able to age where you want...whether that’s in the home you raised a family in, a beach house in Hawaii or a senior living community where you’ve found lasting friendships.
Place is certainly important and makes a difference in our emotional well-being. But it’s not so easy to age where you want. Medical conditions, injuries and overall physical abilities can make some living environments unsafe. You can’t always control your health, but you can look to make your living environment safer as you age.
Here are our picks for four little-known support services to help you and your loved ones age at home.
Non-Medical Support Services
Sometimes you just need a little help around the house. Maybe it’s the lawn mowed because those knees just don’t work as well as they used to. Or, maybe it’s help getting to the grocery store. The first “no brainer,” but often forgot about step in aging at home are non-medical support services. Tabitha’s non-medical support, available in the Lincoln community can help with a wide-range of things like transportation to doctor appointments, meal preparation, light housekeeping and even companionship and bathing. Other services like lawn companies and cleaners can help, too. Even grocery stores are starting to offer delivery services. All are convenient options that make the chores of keeping up a home, a little bit easier.
Transportation seems to be one of the biggest hurdles in aging at home. If driving is no longer an option, getting to doctor appointments and check-ups can seem impossible and put a strain on family members. Today, many health care organizations are looking to technology to help solve the location situation. Virtual doctor consultations are a growing trend and popular for individuals unable to leave their homes. For individuals with chronic conditions like heart disease, frequent check-ups are a must for keeping their health at check and catching warning signs of more serious issues. Devices like Tabitha’s telemonitoring machine, can take vital signs from the comfort of your own home and transmit them to health care professionals for analysis. Digital advances are certainly coming to health care and helping individuals all over the country, age in place.
Adult Day Services
Some days, you just need some support. Adult day programs offer a daytime home away from home for seniors who may be in need of supervision (like those with memory issues), companionship, light medical help, or life enrichment. These programs are often very affordable (a fraction of the costs of living in senior-focused care communities) and can offer medication management, vitals monitoring, meals and snacks, assistance with daily living activities and enriching socialization opportunities.
Meals on Wheels
It’s never “just a meal.” Meals on Wheels programs across the country have been playing a significant role in keeping individuals living independently in their homes. They deliver a hot, nutritious meal to someone who may not be able to leave their home to go to the grocery store or because of physical limitations, may not be able to use the stove. But more than the meal itself, these deliveries provide an invaluable safety check for individuals so family members are assured there’s a check-in at least once a day.
Aging at home is possible and there are resources out there to help at any level. To read more about home services through Tabitha, visit our website.