The thought of hospice care is a lot for many patients and their families to bear. However, hospice could be the best solution for those patients who have a terminal illness and are nearing the end of their life. It is important that people do not discount the benefits of hospice and that they don’t ignore an option that could be good for their loved ones. Take the time to learn more about hospice and why it might be the right option.
Who Qualifies for Hospice?
Many people can qualify for hospice, but it is reserved for patients that have six months or fewer to live. It is important to keep in mind that there is not a six-month limit to hospice care. In some cases, patients will live beyond those six months, and they can still receive the care they need. The purpose of the care is to ensure that patients have the dignity and comfort they need during their final months. It’s not always possible for the family to provide them with this type or level of care, so hospice is a good option.
Although many of the patients who receive hospice care have cancer, that’s not always the case. This type of care is available for anyone who is in the last six months of a terminal illness. Other types of conditions that are common among those receiving hospice care include heart disease and lung disease. It can also be a good solution for those who have dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
Is Hospice Beneficial for Someone with Dementia?
Often, those who have dementia have memory loss and mobility issues that make it difficult or impossible to take care of normal daily activities. Hospice care can help to provide for those needs. The goal is to provide patients with all of the help they need to remain comfortable in their final days. This can also help to reduce the amount of stress that family members feel. They know there are people there to care for their loved ones when they are unable.
What to Look for in Hospice Care
Of course, this doesn’t mean that just any provider will do. Family members need to take the time to find the best possible hospice in the area for their loved ones. They need to be sure that they are working with a company that offers caring and compassionate caregivers. They also need to be sure the caregivers have the experience and the education to provide services to their loved ones.
Additionally, check to see what types of features are offered. Sometimes, facilities will only rely on pain medication for the patients. Although pain medication is often used and can be helpful, find a facility that can do more than just medicate. These final months should be as easy on the patient as possible. They should also be enjoyable. Choose a facility or home caregivers that can provide memory care, physical therapy, and companionship for those who need it.
Good hospice care will make a major difference in the quality of life of the patient. It will also be beneficial for family members. Even though most families want to be there to take care of their loved ones, it is not always possible. They may not be able to provide the amount or level of care that is needed. This is where hospice care can take over.
One of the other benefits of hospice is that it doesn’t have to take place at a facility. For residents who already live in an assisted living facility, having hospice onsite is wonderful benefit, providing a seamless transition for all the care and attention they need when the end of life is near. But it’s also possible to get hospice care in the home. For patients who still live at home when hospice is needed, it ensures that the patient is in a familiar and comfortable location, which can reduce their stress and anxiety. It also means that it’s easy for the family to visit and spend time.
How is an Assisted Living Community Different from Hospice?
An assisted living facility is quite a bit different from hospice, which is for end-of-life care. Assisted living is just as it sounds. It is a location where people can live and simply get some help with certain aspects of their life. They might have some trouble with things like remembering their medications, getting out of bed in the morning, or dressing themselves. Maybe they have some trouble with grooming. Regardless, they need to have some help.
An assisted living community is a great choice. The residents of these facilities will have the same comforts of home that they have come to expect. They will have their own rooms, or they might share a room with someone. They have their own private spaces, but they are part of a community where they can get together with other people of a similar age and socialize. These types of facilities can be great for those who have relatively minor needs, as well as for those who have dementia.
What to Look for in an Assisted Living Facility
Of course, it is important to make sure that the right facility is chosen. Not all assisted living communities are created equal. Therefore, those who want to become residents or their family members will need to make sure that they do their research. Learn more about the reputation of the facility and the staff.
Check to see what types of benefits the facility can provide. Will there be staff available to help with the daily activities? Does the facility offer meals and snacks that are healthy? Will there be activities and outings to help keep the residents happy and mentally stimulated? It is also a good idea to choose a facility that can provide Alzheimer’s or memory care services. Even those who do not have dementia or memory loss yet can benefit from those types of services, should the need for them arise in the future.
Take the time that’s needed to find the best assisted living facility. Check the costs, and the features and benefits that it offers. It could be a great choice for those who need a little help.