Providing Live-in care for Seniors
What is Live-in Care?
We get asked this question a lot, so here it is, Live-in care is when a caregiver (RN, RPN, PSW) lives in a client’s home for a minimum of one full day (24 hours). That’s it! However, you must know, arrangements need to be made for the caregiver’s sleeping quarters.
The live-in caregiver is often a Personal Support Worker (PSW) unless the person’s health issues require a nurse’s care. So, for the sake of this article, we will call the caregiver a PSW.
Who requests Live-in Care and Why?
Families most often request live-in care for seniors who live alone and have Dementia, health issues or need help with mobility and assistance with the activities of daily living (ADL) every day. Some female seniors who have recently become a widow are afraid to sleep alone in their homes, so they want a PSW to stay throughout the night in addition to the day. And then some seniors simply feel the need for a constant companion.
We want to keep in mind many people don’t like living alone at any age.
How long will a PSW Live-in with you?
It’s your choice, and you can request one, two or three days a week, or even seven days a week. However, if you choose seven days a week, the PSW is entitled to two days off so, you may want two PSWs, one during the week and one for weekends. We strongly suggest two PSWs for seven days a week as one PSW is a backup should your main PSW get ill or take a day off or a vacation.
Here are five (5) Benefits to hiring a Live-in PSW
- Your loved one can stay in their home longer with a PSW caring for them. It’s almost like your loved one has an assistant, as a PSW’s role includes Personal Care, but they also help with grocery shopping, taking your loved one to appointments or running errands.
- From the emotional and mental aspects of live-in care, your loved one’s independence and dignity are preserved; they feel in charge of their life again and feel supported, at ease, content, and safe.
- The PSW takes over many tasks that would otherwise be difficult or impossible for your loved one to do on their own. As a result, your loved one can now decide how they want to go about their day;
- Your loved one will receive the full attention of their PSW, who will try to keep them social and engaged in activities or senior programs. The PSW ensures they get regular exercise and fresh air by taking them outside for a walk, working in their garden, or taking them to a park. They also can help them stay in touch with friends.
- From your viewpoint as a family member, live-in care eases your stress and worry by knowing someone is always there to look out for your loved one, especially if an emergency arises. In addition, Live-in care lessens your responsibilities and gives you back your free time as well as the luxury of visiting with your loved one as their son or daughter and not their caregiver. Similarly, your loved one no longer feels like they are a burden or intruding on you or your personal time.
Any or all of the above will help your loved one feel less isolated, less alone and will add much joy back into their life.