Should You Still Consider a Nursing Home When You Grow Older?

Nursing homes have had their reputation dragged through the mud as of late, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic that swept the world in 2020 and 2021.

While care homes used to be the go-to choice for senior care, there are now far more options that give seniors more independence and control over how their future unfolds. While a skilled nursing facility may seem like the best option since you get access to trained physicians and compassionate staff, that’s usually not the whole story.

Nursing homes can create a sense of depression

While nursing homes are usually praised for creating a sense of community, they can actually be fairly depressing as well. When you remove a senior from their familiar home into a care home, they can find it difficult to adjust to their new lifestyle and they might see it as the final step at the end of their life.

They might tell themselves depressing things such as “this is where I pass away” and they may never experience the comfort of being surrounded by family members during the holiday season.

Nursing homes aren’t all equal

There are many stories of seniors being treated terribly by staff at care homes. When they’ve caused harm to elderly patients, it’s enough to make anyone furious at how careless and inconsiderate they can be to seniors. Poor treatment and neglect aren’t uncommon in nursing homes, and some statistics show that they’re typically understaffed which means they’re unable to provide quality care. If you can find a reputable nursing home then it may be a great option, but if the nursing home has poor reviews or is terribly managed, then it should be avoided at all costs.

Nursing homes can be far from family

Depending on the care home that you choose, you might find yourself far away from the rest of your family. This can mean that your family members might not visit you very often, or it could feel like there’s a lack of family presence. Nursing homes do try to build a sense of community–almost like a second family–but it’s not the same as actually having your own family around to visit you. While their efforts are appreciated, they can’t replace your real family.

There are plenty of alternatives to nursing homes

One of the best alternatives to a nursing home is home care. Being able to stay in your own home and receive the care you need when it matters can be all that you need to remain independent, healthy, and happy.

There’s no need to push yourself into a care home just because you’ve reached a certain age or because you need assistance to get around. Instead, you can just stay in your home and hire a home carer to assist you a couple of days a week. When combined with frequent family visits and physical activity, you can be surprisingly independent in your own home and forgo the need for a nursing home.

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