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If you have an aging parent, the term “age in place” is a topic that comes up in many conversations about their future.

Making the decision to have your aging parents remain in their home or to move them into a nursing home is a difficult choice. In-home care offers companion and personal care service to help seniors maintain their freedom and independence. Nursing homes offer a high level of medical care with experienced physicians and nurses on staff.

When in-home care is the best choice:

  • In-home care is ideal when your loved one needs non-medical support and services.
  • In-home care allows your loved one, who is still self-sufficient, to live safely in their own home.
  • Home care providers can adjust their non-medical services based on your loved one needs. Care can be day-to-day, overnight, or scheduled throughout the week.
  • If your loved one just needs support around the home, services can include help with light household chores, such as laundry and vacuuming to help maintain a safe and healthy living environment.
  • If your loved one wants to live at home but needs to reduce the amount of driving they do, a caregiver can provide transportation to run errands, doctor appointments, or social events with friends in the community.
  • If your loved one seeks one-to-one care and individualized attention, an in-home caregiver provides that service.
  • Caregivers can be another set of eyes ensuring that your loved one is taking the right medications when required, is eating properly, dressing, bathing, and is able to function in and around their home.

When a nursing home is the best choice:

  • Your loved one needs constant care nearly every day.
  • Your parent needs skilled nursing care, orthopedic care, physical, occupational, and speech therapy, and/or wound care.
  • They can only walk with assistance or continual supervision.
  • Continence and toileting care are needed daily.
  • Living at home alone becomes dangerous due to difficulty seeing or hearing.
  • Your parent has difficulty making daily decisions or is experiencing memory and recognition issues.
  • Problematic behaviors become more frequent, such as a verbal and physical abuse, acting inappropriately in public, resisting necessary care and wandering.

The choice between in-home care or a nursing home is a tough and emotional family decision. While most adult children want to have their parents live at home, the care their parents need may be too overwhelming and may require skilled services that go beyond their fundamental capabilities. A nursing home might be the best option and best place for a loved one to live out their remaining years.

This article is provided by Roget de Percin Berendes, FirstLight Home Care of Guilford. For more information, visit us online at or call us at 336 808-1351.