There’s no place like home for growing old“I have lived in my home for more than 40 years. I don’t want to have to move.” “The stairs are just getting to be too much for me.” “Since my wife died, I am so lonely.” These are common concerns that I hear all the time. I also hear, “I want to stay in my own home as long as I can.” The good news is that with the right help at home, you might be able to do just that.
By: Mary Krueger, Douglas County Senior Coordinator, Alexandria Echo Press
“I have lived in my home for more than 40 years. I don’t want to have to move.”
“The stairs are just getting to be too much for me.”
“Since my wife died, I am so lonely.”
These are common concerns that I hear all the time. I also hear, “I want to stay in my own home as long as I can.” The good news is that with the right help at home, you might be able to do just that.
Think about the kinds of help you might want in the near future. Planning ahead can be hard because you may not know what kinds of help you may need in the future.
Maybe you live alone, so there is no one to help you. Maybe you don’t need help right now, but you live with a spouse who does. Whatever your situation, start by looking at any illnesses you might have. Talk to your doctor about how these health issues could make it hard for you to get around or take care of yourself in the future.
Some people start having trouble with everyday activities like shopping, cooking and taking care of their home. Others may need help with bathing, dressing or washing their hair. Still others may need help with yard work or running errands.
You can get almost any type of help you want in your home. For a list of providers and what services they provide, contact me at (320) 762-3047. This is an excellent way to start the process of learning what types of services and care can be found in Douglas County.
For many older people, family, friends and neighbors are the biggest source of help. Talk to those close to you about the best way to get what you need.
If you are physically able, think about trading services with a friend or neighbor. If you live alone and so does your neighbor, plan to fix and/or share meals. This is a win-win situation. You may not have to cook as often and you will have company for meals.
If it is getting harder to open a door knob, get out of a chair or put on your socks, there are things available to make these activities easier.
If you live alone and are afraid of falling and not being able to get up, there are emergency alert systems that are available. You just push a button that you wear, and emergency personnel are called.
Thinking about how you are going to pay for the help you need is an important part of this planning. Some things you want may cost money but others are free. Some things may be covered by Medicare, private health insurance or long term care insurance. Some may not.
Chances are that paying for just a few services out of pocket could cost less in the long run than moving into a facility sooner than you need to. Plus you will have your wish of staying home as long as possible.