None of us likes to think about getting old, but it is a fact of life. The UK population is ageing and living longer than ever before with our parents surviving well into their seventies, eighties, and even nineties. But sadly, not all of them remain active and healthy in their senior years.
If you are concerned that your parents are not coping at home, it could be time to suggest live-in care, but it is a sensitive subject and one you should only broach if you are sure they need it. In this complete guide to live-in care UK, we’ll show you how to spot the signs your parents need a live-in carer, so you can get them the help they need.
The Benefits Of Live-In Care
Most of us need a certain level of care when we get older, but many parents and elderly relatives refuse to ask for it as they do not want to be a burden. With live-in care, your loved ones can get the help they need, without relying on family members, and perhaps most importantly of all they can stay in the home that they love.
The benefits of live-in care are endless for those with physical limitations, health conditions, and mental decline, and they provide peace of mind for families. You can custom the level of care to suit your parent's needs, starting with housework and grocery shopping for example, and gradually increasing it as necessary, so they can get used to the idea before having someone stay with them fulltime.
Top 7 Signs That Your Parents Need Live-In Care
There are many signs to look out for when determining if your parents need live-in care. Some are more obvious than others. Here are some of the warning signs that you should be looking out for:
1. Changes Around The Home
If your once houseproud parents no longer seem interested in keeping their home clean, tidy, and well-maintained, it could be a warning that something is wrong. Is the sink piled up with dishes, the laundry basket always full? Could the carpets do with hoovering? If it looks like your parents need help with household chores, they probably do, and this is where a live-in carer comes in handy. They’ll keep your parent’s home spotlessly clean, make sure they throw away any out-of-date food, empty the bins, and ensure they always have clean bed linens and towels.
2. Changes In Personal Hygiene
A sure sign that your parents need a live-in carer is a change in personal hygiene. If you notice that your mum or dad are not washing their hair, cutting their nails, or smelling as clean as they should be, it is time to step in. While this could be a sign of mental decline, it could simply be that they forget to carry out these essential hygiene tasks, and this is one area you may find uncomfortable taking over. A carer will make sure that your parent's shower, brush their teeth, and take care of all the necessary hygiene essentials – without any of the embarrassment.
3. Changes In Personal Appearance
If you notice your parents wearing stained, damaged, or dirty clothes, it could be a sign that they need a live-in carer. Personal appearance is often the first thing we neglect when we get older, but if your parents see a tea-stained cardigan as nothing to worry about, and continue to wear it day after day, they will benefit from having someone to help them in the home.
4. Changes In Physical Function Or Appearance
Physical changes such as noticeable weight loss, unexplained bruises or burns, difficulty walking, and changes in sleeping patterns (such as sleeping throughout the day) are red flags that shouldn’t be ignored or dismissed. They could be a sign that your parents are not coping well on their own, have difficulty cooking, and may have trouble moving about the home unaided. If you notice any such physical changes, you should notify your parent’s doctor and look at employing a live-in carer as soon as possible.
5. Changes In Cognitive Function
We are all guilty of losing our keys now and again but, if your parents are misplacing things regularly or keep forgetting everyday tasks such as paying bills and taking medication, it could be a sign of mental decline, dementia, or Alzheimer’s. In this instance, you should discuss your concerns with your parent’s doctor, who will likely recommend a live-in carer to keep your loved ones safe.
6. Emotional Changes
The pandemic has been especially tough on the elderly, particularly those living alone and, if your parents have lost interest in doing things that they love, become withdrawn, or seem depressed, a live-in carer could help reignite their sparkle. The emotional benefits of a live-in carer are endless, and with someone to talk to 24/7, your parents will never get lonely.
7. Difficulty In Performing Routine Tasks
Does your mum put-off getting-up out of the chair? Is your dad reluctant to have a bath? If so, they could be finding these everyday tasks a challenge. Dressing, grooming, toileting, eating, and moving about the home are all things we take for granted, but if pain, ability, or fear prevents your parents from doing these daily living tasks, they may well need help.
A live-in carer will provide your parents with the support they need to live their best life, and you’ll have peace of mind knowing that there is someone there to look after them while you live yours. Find the perfect live-in carer for your parents today.