When people think of home care for seniors, they primarily think of a senior’s physical needs being met: meal preparation, bathing, dressing, housekeeping, etc. While these are all a part of helping a senior stay healthy and age comfortably at home, meeting the emotional needs of an older adult is also necessary to maintain their health and happiness. In addition to the physical challenges that come with aging, there are also emotional challenges that seniors battle. Along with the fear of becoming a burden to family members, struggling with loneliness is something many seniors endure every day.
Because a spouse has passed and children, grandchildren, and friends may live far away or have responsibilities that keep them from visiting very often, many seniors spend most of their time alone. Feelings of isolation and loneliness can eventually lead to a downward spiral mentally, emotionally, and physically.
To combat this, many families utilize companionship care services from a home care agency. Having a steady companion can powerfully impact the quality of a lonely senior’s life and undo feelings of social isolation.
Four Benefits of Companionship Care
In addition to easing loneliness, companion care provides other benefits for seniors and their families, including:
Improves and maintains mental health
loneliness has been linked to depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline. Studies have also shown that lonely seniors are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than those who don’t feel isolated or alone. Fortunately, society is beginning to recognize that loneliness and depression can be just as damaging to a senior’s health as obesity or smoking.
Companionship care provides the personal contact seniors need to stay engaged. The interaction between a caregiver and senior helps prevent depression and provides the mental stimulation that can slow cognitive decline.
Studies conducted by AARP indicate the overwhelming majority (over 80%) of seniors want to age at home, not in a facility. Home is where they feel the safest and most comfortable. Companionship care helps support seniors’ independence by assisting with everyday tasks like doing laundry, preparing meals, performing light housekeeping, and helping with gardening.
Helps maintain the connection with their community
Interaction with the outside world is one of the keys to happier aging. The quality of their social lives and connections is an important element in the overall well-being of older adults.
Companionship care gets seniors out and about in their neighborhoods and beyond. For mobile seniors, caregivers take walks with them, visit local parks, and accompany them to group fitness classes like tai chi or yoga. Companions can also help a senior maintain community ties by providing transportation to doctor’s appointments, pharmacy pickup, grocery, and other shopping, or visits to the local senior’s center.
Respite and peace of mind for a family caregiver
Family caregivers are often stretched thin with other responsibilities they have to attend to work, spouse, children, and their own physical and mental health needs. They can’t always be there for an aging parent, which can cause feelings of guilt.
Professional companionship care provides respite for family caregivers and gives them peace of mind that their senior loved one is receiving excellent care. Family members can tend to their responsibilities without stressing about the well-being of the older adult they care so much about.
Dependable Senior Care provides excellence in companionship care for seniors in South Florida. We carefully screen all of our caregivers, and we thoughtfully match families with a caregiver they’ll be comfortable and compatible with.
Contact us today to learn more about companionship care and the other home care services we offer in Palm Beach and Broward Counties. We’ll promptly schedule a FREE in-home assessment to discuss your senior’s needs.