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How the role of social workers in Chicago assisted living facilities improve quality of life for elderly residents

Feeling overwhelmed? Consider respite care to give caregivers a much-needed break, recover from a recent illness or injury, or to provide the supportive transition home for rehabilitation. With the holidays coming, it pays to plan ahead, especially if you provide care for a senior. Injury, illness, and incidents can occur that make respite care a viable and valuable option. While it may be the senior’s wish to remain in the home as long and as independently as possible, hospitalizations do occur and respite can be a supportive part of an effective and successful recovery plan.  Senior Living Experts does the legwork for you, providing a list of names and contact information for providers, services, and supports to improve the quality of life for seniors. Check out the wide network and gamut of resources available through this user-friendly site.

Feeling overwhelmed? Consider respite care

Respite care is a short-term solution that offers seniors a safe place to stay temporarily. Respite settings are often assisted-living type facilities, which have beds available for short, recuperative admissions. Reach out to your provider and online network of senior supports to find respite care in your region, as well as to review admission guidelines and estimated costs. Some respite providers may require a physician’s referral, which helps to pinpoint patients that will most benefit from such service provision.

Why is respite care is so important:

  • Rehab and recovery

When a patient is discharged from the hospital, rehabilitation can help prevent re-hospitalization and facilitate recovery. This might entail a few days’ stay in a skilled-nursing facility, or a longer admission with specific goals in mind depending on the precipitating illness or injury. Usually, long-term rehab requires some insurance coverage beyond Medicare, though a hospital case manager can assist with finding the appropriate setting for your distinct needs.

  • Ensures safety

If a senior is living in a home that is not safe, respite care provides a safe, secure placement for the short-term, while repairs or modifications are made. The biggest safety concerns may be related to access, such as the implementation of ramps, lifts, or rails; respite can also be helpful if the senior suffers property damage, such as a flooded basement, which may make the home an unsafe habitat.

  • Caregiver relief

Respite care at an assisted-living facility also provides some relief for caregivers, giving them a break from the full-time responsibilities of caring for another person. Primary caregivers for aging or disabled individuals run the risk of burn-out if they do not take periodic breaks from their duties; this can perpetuate compassion fatigue, which is marked by depression, apathy, fatigue, and illness. Compassion fatigue is common among individuals that provide care for people or animals that are in distress or traumatized, and it can cause secondary-trauma to the caregiver if not prevented.

Some ways to prevent burn-out and compassion fatigue are:

  • Taking time to enjoy leisure activities and hobbies.
  • Engaging in exercise, fitness, or other physical activity.
  • Eating a nutritious diet and getting ample rest.
  • Setting firm boundaries with loved ones, colleagues, or clients and recognizing that you have the right to say ‘no’ to additional responsibilities, commitments, or duties.
  • Keeping stress levels low, with yoga, Pilates, meditation, massage, or other healthy pursuits.

Respite is a solution that allows the senior to return home with the same familiar faces and surroundings, and that provides a break for caregivers who provide full-time assistance. It is a safe, preferred option which can give all involved a recuperative experience.

  • Step-down to home

Respite is often merited following a hospitalization as a step-down to home. For instance, a senior that is admitted to a hospital with an infection or flu likely won’t stay in the hospital for the duration of their illness and recovery. However, heading straight home may put the patient- and those around them- at risk. What do you do? A short stay in an assisted-living respite can be the solution, providing some therapeutic care for the senior while protecting the caregivers at home.

Would you benefit from respite care? Learn more

Would you or someone you love benefit from respite care? Talk to your physician, or reach out online to find respite providers in your geographic locale. There will be guidelines and caveats, depending on where you elect to go and the nature of your stay, so speak with representatives and review online feedback to find the best options for your distinct needs.Are you in need of a break? You- or someone you love- could be a candidate for a respite care stay at an assisted living facility near you. Reach out to Senior Living Experts online for a comprehensive list of services, providers, and options that are in line with what you are looking for. Your primary care provider can assist with pinpointing the best approaches to your recovery and respite. Don’t have a doctor? Senior Living Experts can help with that, too!

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