If you are helping look after a senior loved one or family member with dementia, then acting as their caregiver can be a very demanding, full-time job. Dementia is such an unpredictable illness and it can make looking after someone with this disease very challenging. While many people find that being a dementia caregiver is very rewarding, it doesn’t mean it is without its challenges. It can be time consuming, stressful, lead to caregiver burnout and even cause some caregivers to compromise their physical and mental health. This is why it is so important for every dementia caregiver to know about respite care.
Respite care is a type of temporary care designed with busy home caregivers in mind. Respite is not a permanent care solution, but a valuable resource for busy caregivers meant to provide them with relief so that they can take care of themselves and their own needs. This allows caregivers to find balance in their lives and to make sure they are rested, healthy and able to be the best person and best caregiver they can be.
While in most situations, respite care can be tailored to fit the individual needs of the individual with dementia, there are two main types of respite care you will find for seniors with dementia, in-home respite care and residential respite care.
What is in-home respite care?
In-home respite care, as the name suggests features having an in-home care provider come to your loved one’s home to look after them. This is sometimes called companionship care as it is meant to make sure your loved one isn’t lonely or isolated. Typically, dementia caregivers will hire these professionals when they need a few hours or an afternoon to run errands or take care of their own responsibilities.
What is residential respite care?
When your senior loved one needs longer, or more involved care, there is residential respite care. This is meant for seniors who need a full day, multiple days or a multiple weeks of care at a time. This is a great option for dementia caregivers that need to take a break from caregiving to travel, go on vacation or simple for those who need a break. As the name suggests, this type of respite care is typically involved in an assisted living or nursing home type of community, instead of in the home.
When it comes to determining which type of respite care is best for you and your loved one, it is important to remember that every senior is different, so you need to find a respite care situation that works best for you and your loved one. When looking for a respite care provider, it is important to make sure that you are finding a person or company that is not only experienced in senior respite care, but one that is experienced specifically in dementia care. Looking after a senior with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease is a big commitment and one that requires a certain level of experience, so finding caregivers with this type of training and experience is extremely important for your loved one and your own peace of mind.