What you need to know about residential care
Residential care refers to the general care that is provided in a care home, and involves assisting residents with day to day needs such as washing, dressing, taking medication and moving about. Residential care homes are generally referred to as ‘care homes’.
A care home is a residential setting that provides a home for elderly people and access to 24 hour care. Some care homes will be set up to support a specific kind of need, for example care homes for people with dementia or terminal illnesses.
What are examples of residential care?
Residential care involves providing personal care to residents, predominantly assisting them with bathing, dressing and medication.
Examples of residential care include:
- helping residents with showering/bathing
- dressing residents
- helping residents go to the toilet
- making sure that residents stay hydrated and fed
- preparing residents for bed
- changing incontinence pads
It is the responsibility of the care workers to ensure that residents’ needs are met, they are looked after and to make sure that they are not a danger to themselves or to anyone else.
Care workers are there so that there is always someone to look out for the wellbeing of the residents who are unable to do so for themselves.
Who is eligible for residential care?
Residential care will be provided for people who struggle to live independently, often due to mobility issues as a result of age or mental deterioration.
If you believe that you or someone you know is struggling to cope with living independently at home, then it might be time to think about residential care. For people who need more support, at Highpoint Care we operate a luxury care home with dementia care facilities.
Residential care facilities offer security, interaction with other people and round the clock support that would be impossible for elderly individuals living alone.
To enquire about extra support, you should contact your local authority for a care needs assessment and they can assess the individual to determine a suitable course of action and support.
What are the benefits of residential care?
There are a number of benefits attached to residential care:
For individuals with dementia in particular, living alone can be dangerous if the individual gets confused about where they are or begins to act out as a result of behavioural and cognitive changes. In a residential care home, individuals are in a safe, secure environment where they can be monitored 24 hours a day.
Social interaction & stimulation
Many elderly people can get very lonely and isolated, and combined with a deterioration of their mental state can mean that their quality of life is significantly impacted.
In a residential care home, residents can be around other people and can take part in activities to keep their minds occupied and stimulated.
Nutritious cooked meals
At a residential care home, residents will receive nutritious cooked meals that are tailored to their dietary requirements, making sure that they have a balanced, healthy diet which they are unlikely to have if they struggle to cook independently.
Residents can spend quality time with friends and family
There is often a fear that going into a care home means that you will be trapped and unable to experience life outside which is a complete myth. Friends and family will still be able to visit and do things that they enjoy.
Having full-time care means that loved ones can spend precious time together without the worry of having to take on the responsibility of the resident’s care.
Are there any other options apart from residential care?
If you or your loved one are not quite sure if long-term residential care is the right choice, there is an option of respite care.
Respite care is a form of temporary care and more like an opportunity for a short break and allows the person to experience what care home life is like but only for a limited period of time. A respite break is viewed as like a care home ‘trial period’.
How do I know if residential care is the right option for me or my loved one?
Making a decision about residential care can be difficult and this is why it is useful to ask yourself the following questions:
- Is the person able to make their own decision about their care?
- Has all the support been given to the person in order for them to make a decision about their care?
- Have you considered alternative options such as care at home?
- Would you prefer to try out a short break to see what residential care would be like or how your loved one might be in a different environment?
- How would a care home be beneficial to you or to your loved one?
- Do you feel that 24 hour nursing staff could provide better care than you?
- Have you considered what would make the person feel most comfortable and which care home would be best suited to their needs?
- If the care option is for your loved one, have you discussed it with them?
At Highpoint Care, we understand that choosing residential care is a big change and requires a lot of support and understanding. Be sure to research your options thoroughly before making a final decision and talk to people around you to get their opinions.
If you are struggling to figure out what the best course of action is, please get in touch and a member of our team will be happy to talk everything through with you.