My mother’s health has been declining over the past year. While she is still mentally alert, her physical health is failing. My husband and I are considering having her move in with us. Our children are grown and gone, and we are both retired.
One concern I have is that my mother will likely be bedridden before long. Can an adult who is bedridden be well cared for at home? I want the best for her, and believe that is with us. But I don’t want to do this if there is a better option for her.
What should we consider before making this decision?
What to Know about Caring for an Adult Who Is Bedridden
It sounds like you and your husband are taking a thoughtful approach to a very difficult situation. Understanding what you are taking on is very important when it comes to caregiving for a senior.
The good news is that many families successfully care for a loved one who is bedridden at home. Sometimes it is out of financial necessity, and other times it is because they want the senior to be in a loved one’s home.
Here are a few things I suggest you and your husband consider:
- Do you have space in your home to dedicate to your mother and her care? For now, it sounds like she’ll need a bedroom with easy access to a senior-friendly bathroom.
- Are you ready for the around-the-clock demands of caregiving? If your mother needs to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, someone will need to help her. Also, if you and your husband like to travel, being a full-time caregiver can make that more difficult.
- Families who have a senior who is bedridden sometimes utilize home care aides to help with hands-on care. Overnight care is a service that can be especially helpful to maintain a more normal routine. Will you be comfortable having aides in your home? (Keep in mind if you utilize a home care agency, the aides will undergo background checks.)
- While no one really wants to make this decision based on finances alone, they are a concern. Even if your mother pays for all of her medical expenses, you’ll likely incur some expenses you hadn’t planned on. Unexpected caregiving costs might include transportation expenses, food, and increased utilities.
- Most communities have a variety of aging services providers that can come right to your home. Visiting physician groups, home care agencies, mobile X-ray services, in-home physical therapy, and telehealth services are just a few. Before you make this commitment to your mother, take time to explore what is available near you.
I hope this information helps you and your husband work through this decision. If the Griswold Home Care team can answer more questions or be of assistance, please let us know!