Nobody likes thinking about getting old. I can handle thinking about myself getting old, but I don’t like thinking about my parents getting older. I always push that to the back of my mind and choose to live in ignorance. I know it’s inevitable, I know there’s nothing I can do to stop it and I know there might come a day when my sisters, brother and I have to make a decision about their care.
My grandad was diagnosed with dementia and although adaptations were made so he could stay in his own home for as long as possible, sadly there came a time when he needed more care than could be provided at home. At this point it was decided that the best thing would be for my grandad to live in a specialist care home where he would have round the clock care.
Making the decision to move a loved one into a care home can be a very emotional and upsetting time. There’s a lot to consider when choosing which care home will be suitable for their needs. If your loved one has an illness which needs specialist care such as dementia you might want to consider a specialist dementia care home where they provide care in relation to their illness and have a good understanding of it.
When you start looking at care homes it can be a daunting and overwhelming process. How do you know if you have chosen the right care home? Will it fit your loved ones needs? There are a lot of questions you will need to answer to make sure the care home you have chosen is the right one.
Below are some questions that Barchester suggests considering when choosing a care home.
- Does it feel homely? – Are you welcomed by friendly staff? Have you asked people living in the home if they like it there?
- Environmental considerations – Are the home’s interiors colourful, homely and stylish as opposed to bland, sterile and uninteresting? Are the communal spaces arranged in a way that encourages social activity and creates a homely feel?
- Staff – Do staff display a positive attitude towards their role? Do staff work well as a team?
- Activities/Interests – Are people engaging in activities that are available? Is there a sense of community?
- Person-centred approach – Do staff demonstrate a natural empathy with residents living in the home? Do you observe staff connecting well with the individuals who live in the home?
This is just a small selection of things to consider and questions you might want to think about. Thankfully, Barchester have created a helpful e-book which provides a lot of helpful information about choosing a care home for people living with dementia. The e-book contains a very detailed list of questions to ask when you visit a care home, these questions will let you get a good understanding of what each care home can offer and there may be questions there you haven’t thought of yet. You could print out the questions and take them with you to as you go along so you don’t forget anything.