If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior with Alzheimer’s, or for someone who is dealing with the aftermath of a stroke or some other debilitating disease or injury, planning ahead is a luxury you just don’t have. Eventually though, a time will come when it’s necessary to ask for help, either from family members or a home care agency. You may even need to consider assisted living.
It’s easy to push planning aside, to consider options when you have some down time (even though you know that’s not likely to happen anytime soon). Don’t wait for a crisis point: making a decision about senior care is a complex and involved process, a decision that should not be settled on overnight or in a frantic rush.
As much as possible, even if for just 10 minutes at a time, gather information about local resources via the web (you can use our search tool here). Ask around for recommendations and references. Have a conversation with the person you’re caring for; ask him what kind of care he prefers. Share your concerns with your spouse, siblings, and other trusted, caring individuals. If you’re ever in the area of an assisted living home of interest (say, on the way home from the grocery store), stop by and ask for a quick tour.
Your turn: How did you fit in time for senior care research while caregiving?