Assisted living, or Personal Care as it’s more commonly known in the care sector, is when home care evolves into something of a more hands-on nature – dressing and undressing, helping with the toilet, bathing, grooming and suchlike – when you might need a little extra help with any or all of these. If you are currently looking for the additional support for yourself or a loved one, you may be worried about when to ask for the help of a personal care assistant. It’s a common question and one we’ve created this article to discuss.
A little background to the question
We have an aging population in the UK, with some 10 million or more people over the age of 60, or around one in six of the population. So it has never been more important for us to invest our time and public money into looking after those most in need, those most vulnerable in our society.
Unfortunately, austerity measures over the last few years have eroded this care. And, as budgets have shrunk and pressure on local authorities to make cut after cut in public services has begun to bite, it is the elderly health and care sector that has felt the pinch most of all.
In Britain we pride ourselves in our kindness and willingness to look after others, and when those we love fall ill or become frailer with old age, we want to ensure that they remain comfortable and retain their dignity no matter what. But no matter how supportive friends or family are, there comes a time for some when this just isn’t enough on its own.
What is personal care?
Personal care is anything over and above domiciliary care that requires a more personal approach to the care being given. This may involve shaving or cutting of hair when popping to the barber or salon is no longer an option, it could involve hair brushing or cleaning teeth, dressing and undressing, or help with bathroom trips and bathing. Personal care is most often provided on a live-in basis, but if you just need help with some aspects of your home care then you can certainly select to have a more ad hoc service. It’s whatever works best for you.
Personal care is a discreet service, offered by caring professionals who know when to intervene and when to give you your personal space.
Why ask for personal care?
In many cases friends, family and neighbours will chip in when needed, we’re a caring nation after all, but there will come a time for some when this part-time support just is not enough.
- Friends and family have other time commitments – professional personal care assistants are dedicated to you.
- Personal care involves some assistance that may be a little embarrassing for some – carers place your dignity first, they are professionals, able to handle any situation in a friendly, caring manner.
- Part-time care is fine if you are able to look after yourself in the in-between times, but when your needs become more constant your care must do so also.
- Would your friends and family know what to do? Getting your shopping for you and sitting with you for a chat once a week may be something they are excellent at, but could they change a catheter or make sure that you shower without slipping over? Live-in carers and personal carers are professionally trained and experienced individuals, adept at handling all manner of both planned for and emergency situations.
- Quality of life. A carer can elevate someone’s quality of life, helping them to feel better about themselves, for example, by getting them bathed and groomed, helping out with tea when friends visit or setting up a Skype chat with the grandchildren.
- Peace of mind. Full-time assistance can give friends and family a rest – it can give everyone peace of mind that those they care about are being looked after by a caring professional, and it could revitalise those whose lives have become more house arrest than home care.
Who are the personal carers?
Personal carers are well-trained professionals who understand the importance of maintaining dignity and quality of life for those whose care they are entrusted with. They will lend a hand as and when they’re needed, and know how to be tactful.
Some people might be uncomfortable at the thought of someone assisting them with bathing and toileting, but personal carers are experienced in helping elderly or infirm individuals with these tasks. Those with limited mobility or who have difficulty moving around easily find the presence of a personal carer reassuring at these times. It’s all about dignified care, quality of life and boosting self-esteem, and little things like combed hair or trimmed nails, a good shave or getting into your favourite outfit, can make all the difference there.
ANA Nursing has been providing professional personal care services to the elderly and infirm for over 20 years, and we make sure that every single member of our team is selected not only for their qualifications and experience but also for their nature, their personality and their care for others. They are all kind nature, discreet and professional to the core. And they are here to help when you need us.
If you have a loved one who you think could benefit from a little extra assistance with their daily routine, or who needs a little more focused help throughout the day, our carers can be there to support them. To find out more about personal care and how it could help you or someone you look after, contact us today on 0208 905 7701 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.