Remaining in your home as you age can be challenging as physical and mental limitations make simple household chores difficult. Mopping the floor, washing windows, doing laundry, raking leaves, or dusting can be overwhelming.
Every individual has their own set of abilities and limitations so it’s important to recognize what those are when seeking care solutions.
Maybe your loved one can’t manage carrying heavy loads of laundry, but they can still fold clothes and put them away. Perhaps she still loves to cook but walking the grocery store aisles pushing a heavy cart is now too difficult. He can’t clean the bathroom sinks and floors, but he can still organize the items in his medicine cabinet. Maybe your loved one loves gardening but can no longer mow the lawn or rake leaves.
There are a variety of resources and support services available throughout the community to help caregivers and their elderly loved ones find help with the goal of remaining in their home.
Kentuckiana Regional Planning & Development Agency’s (KIPDA) Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) provides information, counseling, and assistance to families and their loved ones to help determine the level of care they require. The organization connects families with housekeeping and chore services, in-home personal care, home meal delivery programs, and caregiver support. They are not affiliated with any one organization and provide unbiased consultations based on the individual’s needs. You can reach KIPDA at 502.266.5571 or visit kipda.org and click social services for more information.
Eldercare Locator is a service of the U.S. Administration on Aging that helps connect families with elder in-home support services in their area. Online resources include a fact sheet on hiring in-home help and tips on aging in place. Visit eldercare.acl.gov/Public/index.aspx or call 1.800.677.1116.
USAging provides resources and information on home and community-based services that help older adults and those with disabilities live independently in their homes. The list of services includes homemaker/chore services, home delivered meals, and more. The goal is to bring needed services directly to people where they live. usaging.org
Finding What Works
It’s important to find the right level of care your loved one requires while allowing them to continue to manage what they can on their own. There are significant psychological benefits to staying active and engaged while maintaining a sense of achievement and purpose. Studies have found that doing routine chores can help boost memory and cognitive function.
There are also physical benefits to doing household chores. They can be a great way to get someone moving as well as nurture a sense of self-sufficiency and accomplishment.
Safety is of primary concern so you’ll want to continue to monitor your loved one’s activities and abilities and access help when needed.
Signs Your Loved One May Need a Helping Hand
Many older adults won’t ask for help so it’s important to be aware and look for warning signs that may indicate when household chores are becoming more than they can manage on their own.
- House is dusty and floors are dirty.
- Dishes remain unwashed or poorly cleaned.
- Clothing and linens aren’t clean.
- Bathrooms are unclean.
- Food is scarce and/or has expired.
- Yard is overgrown.
- Home is in need of repairs.
By Kym Voorhees Raque