Your father’s physician has recommended that you start looking for a room for your dad in a nearby Louisville nursing home. You have a vague idea of what to expect, but it’s time to become more informed.
Nursing homes are funded by Medicare and Medicaid, residents’ families, or a combination of these sources. In return, the nursing home agrees to provide a set of services. SkilledNursingFacilities.org cites the following as the areas that nursing home care should address.
Meeting Basic Physical Needs
A fundamental requisite of nursing home care is assisting the resident with all of the physical needs, including the activities of daily living. This includes the following:
- bathing and other tasks of hygiene, such as brushing and flossing teeth, brushing hair, and cleaning dentures and eyewear;
- eating and drinking;
- getting in and out of bed;
- obtaining speech, occupational, or physical therapy;
- managing medications; and
- supervising—for example, keeping an eye on residents that may wander away from the nursing home or into unsafe areas of the facility.
Keeping Depression at Bay
Depression is a frequent visitor at nursing homes. Residents may feel overwhelming loneliness, as well as a sense of loss from having moved out of their familiar home and neighborhood. About a quarter of nursing home residents are severely depressed, and another quarter to a fifth are mildly depressed.
Nursing homes can provide a variety of social activities, such as games and crafts, musical programs, and outings. Interaction with a variety of staff members, in addition to visitors and other residents, may prevent depression from setting in.
Although nursing homes frequently are understaffed, the sign of a good one is allowing enough time for staff members to spend time visiting the residents. Elderly residents enjoy showing off their family photos, talking about their interests, or playing a friendly game of checkers.
Hands-on services, such as manicures and pedicures, can make residents feel cared for and pampered. Helping the residents to keep in touch with loved ones by phone or email can also combat loneliness. Some nursing homes even allow therapy pets to visit the residents.
Maintaining an Active Brain
A schedule of interesting activities helps fight not only depression but also boredom. If a mind is allowed to decay, it will. Access to the internet, daily book or newspaper reading, gardening, and genealogy classes will appeal to a variety of residents. A Wii can provide a bit of manageable exercise, as well.
Keeping the Faith
Sometimes the elderly who enter a nursing home miss their house of worship and the people they knew there. Spirituality can give strength to people who are feeling the effects of advanced age and preparing for the end of their mortal lives.
The nursing home can support visits from spiritual leaders and members of the resident’s house of worship. In addition, they can provide
- on-site chaplains;
- regular worship services by religious leaders in the community;
- religious holiday celebrations for various faiths; and
- special meals, if requested, for faith traditions.
A nursing home should be just that: a home.
Has Your Loved One Been Injured In A Nursing Home?
If you believe your loved one is being subjected to nursing home abuse you need to speak with an experienced Kentucky nursing home neglect attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our office directly at 888.450.4456 to schedule a free consultation.