How home care can help
As we age it is natural to lose some of our strength and ability. Daily tasks become harder to do and we also may not have as much stamina and endurance as we used to. Sometimes we forget important things, or we may be recovering at home from a fall or an illness and be unable to care for ourselves independently. Home care companies can be a good solution to provide help at times like these.
Home care workers, also called caregivers, will come into the home and help with chores such as cleaning, cooking, laundry and pet care. Caregivers can also provide companionship—playing board games, reading aloud and providing medication reminders. If necessary, they can also help with personal care tasks, such as bathing and dressing.
It can be hard to decide whether you really need help, or if you might need just a little assistance. “We’re there to do as little or as much as they need,” said Sherry Jones of Seniors Helping Seniors. Caregivers can stop by for just a couple of hours or they can stay all day.
Seniors Helping Seniors employs senior adults as their caregivers. According to Jones, “Our caregivers can identify well with the peers they are helping.” They have several well-qualified Heights residents on staff, retired from their jobs working in local hospitals, assisted living, and private duty care.
Homewatch Caregivers, a caregiving agency with clients in the Heights, also matches the personality and background of its caregivers to that of their clients. Ashley Hill, director of marketing, said, “Matching the caregiver skill set and personality to the client can increase the quality of life.”
Caregiver help can also provide tremendous relief for those caring for an ailing family member. Homewatch Caregivers recently provided help to a Cleveland Heights woman who was caring for her husband. Hill recalled, “The help was life-changing for her. She was able to go back to being a family member instead of a family caregiver.”
Opening your home to someone you don’t know can be intimidating. Reputable home care companies screen their caregivers carefully before hiring them, and then again at regular intervals. Jones said, “We give three interviews, do a criminal background check, and three reference checks. We screen them as well as anyone possibly can.” Reputable companies are also licensed, bonded and insured. Hill said, “Always ask how long the company has been in business and what training they provide to their caregivers.”
If you need medical care, or if the layout of your home makes it hard for you to live there safely, you may need other help in addition to home care. Please talk with your doctor or the social workers at the Cleveland Heights Senior Activity Center to see what resources are available for you.
Seniors Helping Seniors may be reached at 440-759-0319, Homewatch Caregivers may be reached at 216-593-0120, and the Cleveland Heights Senior Activity Center may be reached at 216-691-7377.
Judith Eugene is a native of Cleveland Heights who provides life-enrichment classes and activities for senior adults and those with physical and mental challenges through www.LovingHandsGroup.com. She may be reached at 216-408-5578 or Judith@LovingHandsGroup.com