When is Long Term Care Necessary?

A group of seniors enjoy their long term care facility

As you look to the future, it’s hard to imagine a day when you can no longer care for yourself. It’s also difficult to think of a time when a parent or loved one cannot live on their own.

Before you get to this point, some conversations about long term care can save you worry and headaches down the road. Putting it off can leave you feeling overwhelmed about the options and decisions that may need to be made.

What is Long Term Care?

Seeking long term care options becomes necessary when you or your family member needs assistance with simple tasks such as walking, eating, using the restroom, and transportation. At some point, you will need to realize that caring for yourself or others has moved beyond the normal aging process. Watch for these warning signs to know that the time for long term care has arrived:

  • Physical issues: Look for signs like weight loss, problems with balance, falling, loss of strength, and loss of daily living activities (showering, dressing, eating).
  • Mental deterioration: This can include memory loss and confusing names. It can also be an early sign of dementia, even Alzheimer’s. This can worsen quickly and cause many safety issues.
  • Changes in lifestyle: Look for things that are out of place in the house, or if the house isn’t being kept clean and neat. Also pay attention to physical damage such as burn marks in the kitchen or the car hitting a fence.

Long Term Senior Care

Not everyone who requires this type of senior care needs it to be a permanent solution. It can be a temporary fix for some people, including those who need:

  • Rehabilitation from a hospital stay
  • Recovery from illness
  • Recovery from injury
  • Recovery from surgery
  • End-of-Life care due to a terminal medical condition

The more permanent version of long term care is typically due to the following:

  • Chronic medical condition
  • Chronic severe pain
  • Permanent disabilities
  • Dementia
  • Needing help with daily living activities
  • Need for supervision

Planning for the Future

Knowledge about what is to come can help lessen the stress of your senior care decision. Plan ahead for your care or a loved one’s care with these simple steps:

  1. Educate yourself: Learn the difference between assisted living, independent living, skilled nursing and hospice in order to understand what each provides.
  2. Plan financially: The cost of your living needs will vary depending on what you require. Ask facilities about any assistance programs, and educate yourself on what Medicaid covers. Medicaid can provide long term care coverage, but eligibility varies state to state, and not everyone can qualify.
  3. Find long term care centers near you: Start researching what facilities are near you. Once you have a few places that interest you, set up times to take tours and meet the staff. It is important to see what they offer firsthand.
  4. Create legal instructions: This will help you stay in charge of your decision about personal care and finances.

Starting the Conversation about Future Senior Care

As your parents or other loved ones begin to age, a discussion about senior living arrangements might be necessary. These conversations can be difficult, but they can also really make a difference for everyone involved.

  • Plan ahead so you can evaluate options together.
  • Bring it up in everyday conversations.
  • Listen to their concerns and preferences.
  • Explain why they need care.
  • Involve others in the conversations if they do not respond to you.

Long Term Care Options in Dowling Park at Advent Christian Village

When you are ready to begin your search for long term care centers near you, we invite you to learn more about Dacier Manor, the assisted living community at Advent Christian Village, and Good Samaritan Center, offering skilled nursing and memory care services. Our supportive staff and amenities can ensure each member has the highest level of care. Contact us at Advent Christian Village to schedule your senior living tour today.

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