Are you running on a busy schedule? Or, are you living in a different city than your parents? If your answer to any of these questions was yes – I can relate with you. Not being able to look after your parents when they are ageing is a daunting experience for any child. If you are separated by geographic limits, the responsibilities just become all the trickier.
When I moved from my hometown, I was pretty sure I would visit my parents every month. And in a few years, I will bring them here with me. Before I could do that, during the Diwali preparation, my dad’s leg slipped from the stool he was standing on and he fractured one of his ankle bones. Thank God, he just had some back pain in the coming weeks and nothing serious. But I was full of guilt – I couldn’t be there when he was resting at home. That was when one of my colleagues asked me to think about home care attendants.
If your loved ones need medical attention on a regular basis, you should focus on getting a nurse. That said, getting a nurse who is attending your loved ones every single hour is not always viable. Instead, you can hire a home care attendant who helps your loved one with every single life-sustaining activity, that she or he may need help with.
A home care attendant will do everything that you can do. This means that they will help your loved ones with everything except the medical procedures.
Usually, when a patient is recovering from heavy illness, she needs support in moving from one day to another. Whether it is just taking a stroll from one room to another, or going to the washroom, or something simpler like eating – they need help. If you are running on a busy schedule, it can get very difficult for you to attend to all their needs. This is where home care attendants are of immense help.
This would largely depend on where your parents are staying and what all medical problems are they facing. Usually, home care attendants working in nearby hospitals might get ready to work as home care attendants. Since they are not performing medical procedures, home care attendants are more affordable than 24 x 7 nurses. You might even have to make arrangements for the home care attendant to stay in the house.
To me, getting a home care attendant was the best decision I could’ve taken. From the day she started living in our house, I started feeling a bit more relaxed. Not only this, my dad started showing great recovery. He did complain about some shoulder pain, for which she took him to a doctor. But it all turned out fine; much better than I had expected.
Generally, female home care attendants are able to take care of both male and female patients. That said, you might even go for a male home care attendant to help your parents in more needful hours. Initially, you should check the attendant’s background and ensure that she/he is fit to work. For this, you should go for a thorough due diligence and background check, to ensure that she/he does not have a criminal record.
Once you have appointed someone to be a home care attendant, make sure you brief them thoroughly about the medical history of both your parents. The best way to do this would be to make the home care attendant visit your family doctor, who is aware of the medical history of your parents and let the doctor brief the attendant.
Now when I am working, I can pick up the phone and call my mom-dad anytime, and I will get to hear from my home care attendant that they are fine. This in itself gives me all the strength in the world.
Now that the home care attendant was a part of my life, I wanted to make him comfortable in my home. I wanted to give him a sense of association and belonging, so I started talking to him about his dreams, goals, family and aspirations.
Also, I sometimes shared my fears regarding my father and this way we were able to have common things to talk to. These interactions served as a fundamental pillar in the trust-building exercise. Slowly, he became comfortable at our home which made me relieved as he was now more compassionate towards the needs of my father.
When the first time my home care attendant advised me to start changing my father’s position every few hours, I was not very sure about it. I felt that it would cause discomfort to him as he has trouble moving all the time. But I still agreed.
And I found that this helped my father tremendously and the problem of bedsores reduced. So, from the next time, I started trusting in the abilities and knowledge of the attendant. This helped in the development of a mutual bond where I trusted his advice and he took care of my father’s needs. I slowly realized he is more capable of catering to the specific needs of my father than any of us in his family.
My biggest concern while hiring a home care attendant was how I should allow any unknown into my house. We have our own rules, traditions, and customs and someone from the outside would not understand everything we believe and do. But I was wrong. It just took me a few days to make him understand how we do things at our house.
He was so attentive and quickly learned how we managed to keep everything in control. As he was trained enough to give proper care, he was more adaptive to a new environment like ours and soon did everything as I wanted. The knowledge-sharing about house rules and duties paved the way for a long-term relationship.
Now it has been six months since he first stepped in our home to care for my father and I cannot thank my stars enough for taking this decision. All my apprehensions vapoured off when I started trusting my home care attendant. So, I believe it’s just a matter of a few weeks and some honest efforts. That’s how you make a home care attendant a regular part of your life and start trusting them with the well being of your loved ones.
Home care Attendants can be of great help for someone who wishes to look after their elder one but can’t do so due to other responsibilities. A Home Care Attendant is capable of looking after your elder ones in the best possible manner. Last but not least, Treat them like your family so that they treat you the same.