What Are Adult Day Services and How Can They Help Caregivers?January 3, 2020
For working parents, a trusted childcare center that can feed, care for, and entertain their children is invaluable. But did you know that almost the exact same service is available for your senior citizen? Adult day services provide all the essential activities and amenities for your loved ones needs, and here are a few ways they can make a huge difference for caretakers.
What Are Adult Day Services?
Adult day services offer professional care to seniors dealing with daily challenges of memory loss. These services are geared towards older adults who need daytime supervision but don’t need full-time residential care quite yet. During regular work hours, these services centers provide meals, engaging activities, and routine observation that caters to every senior on site.
Do Adult Day Services Have Specific Activities?
It might take some time for your family member to adjust to the daytime setting, which is why adult day services centers are full of activities that encourage your loved one to socialize and have fun. Furthermore, these services centers offer a range of amenities to satisfy the physical needs of your family member. Some services include:
- Social activities – Daily scheduled activities like arts and crafts, music, mind-stimulating games, and even exercise groups keep your senior smiling all day long.
- Meals – Adults can count on three meals a day in addition to multiple snack servings. The majority of service centers are also able to accommodate dietary restrictions.
- Health services – Caregivers can rest assured knowing their loved one has access to on-site medical attention from trained professionals. Services can range from medication dispensing to intensive therapeutic care.
- Personal care – Ancillary services such as bathing and grooming are also available to assist with daily living activities.
How Do Adult Day Services Help Caregivers?
The perfect transition for caregiving support, adult day services are a strong daytime option for when your senior isn’t ready for long-term care but still requires regular supervision. In fact, these services can sometimes help to postpone the need for long-term care. This is because caregivers can receive a much-needed break while feeling confident that their family member is in a safe communal environment. Similarly, these services allow caregivers to invest in their own self-care, possibly enabling them to keep their loved one out of residential care for longer than anticipated.
If your parents are getting a little older and need some help with daily chores like preparing meals, dressing and remembering to take medications, you may be unsure about where to get them the assistance theyneed when you’re not available. Traditionally, older adults transitioned into anursing home when living in their own home became too much of a challenge. Today,there are a number of options for older adults who are slowing down a little,but don’t require full-time medical care. Adult day services can be a good,affordable alternative to a nursing home for millions of older Americans.
Adult day services are usually available during regular business hours and offer a place to take your older loved one while you are at work or have other obligations. While they are at the day services facility, they’ll have the opportunity to socialize with others their own age, while having someone to keep an eye on them, provide meals and help them remember to take their medications and other minor health care needs.
How adult day services differ from other care options
Unlike a retirement community, seniors at adult day services return to their residence at the end of the day. Adult day services allow caregivers to be able to work full-time and maintain something of a private life while still making sure their loved one receives the supervision and care they need. Compared to other care options such as nursing homes, senior cooperatives, and hospice care, the cost of adult day services is much more affordable.
Questions to Ask When Visiting an Adult Day Care Center
Choosing the right adult day service center is incredibly important for the health and well-being of seniors. During the time you are at work, your loved one can enjoy various amenities that will keep them entertained, productive, and – above all – healthy.
Seniors can partake in activities ranging from social events such as arts and crafts to personal care services, like bathing and grooming. However, these services may not be offered in all adult day services centers. Choosing the right place for your loved one involves asking detailed questions throughout different areas.
You should ask the community questions that pertain to their business and how long they have been in operation. This will ensure that they are reputable and safe for your loved one. Questions include:
- How long has the center been in operation?
- If required, is the center licensed, certified, or accredited?
- What are the days and hours of operation?
- What are the policies for late arrival or late pick-up?
Because your senior will be spending the day at the center, it is important that they have the proper care and services for their well-being. Questions include:
- What assistance is provided during feeding times or help with restroom use?
- Is specialized care provided for specific conditions such as memory loss or TBIs?
- Are there any additional services offered, such as transportation, podiatry, or hair styling?
- Is there access to physical or occupational therapy?
- What types of activities are provided?
- Are participants involved in planning activities?
- Are meals provided? Are special diets accommodated?
- When is a senior no longer able to receive care at the center?
It is also a good idea to ask questions about the staff who will be working with your loved one throughout the day. These questions can range from broad to specific, but may include:
- What is the ratio between participant and staff?
- What kind of training does staff receive?
- Are there any volunteers to help staff?
Lastly, weighing your options also means figuring out your payment options. Because adult day service centers provide different rates, you must ask specific questions relating to payment. These include:
- What is the fee and is it an hourly, daily, or monthly charge?
- How much are the other charges, such as meals, transportation, and outings? Are these factored into the cost or are there additional fees?
- Is financial assistance available if needed?
7 Steps for Choosing an Adult Day Services Center
Adult day services offer seniors a host of supervised activities as well as health support and social services to get them through the day while you tend to other matters. When it comes to choosing an adult day services center, you want to ensure your loved one is cared for and has peer support during your time away. Asking the right questions and determining your wants and needs are crucial steps toward making the right decisions.
Here are seven simple steps to assist you in choosing the right adult day care center for your loved one.
- Determine Needs
It is important to evaluate the needs of your loved one and how an adult day services center can meet them. Some important needs can include:
- Different types of social activities that accommodate various interests
- Assistance with daily activities such as walking, eating, and bathing
- Various therapies and well-being programs specific to their health needs
- Specialized nutritional and diet monitoring
As the caregiver, you must also have certain requirements that need to be met. It is important that your loved one has free time, but they must also feel comfortable and safe at the center. To ensure your loved one is cared for and protected while you are at work, look for an adult day services center that provides a safe and secure environment.
- Find a Location
The next step is Although doing a quick online search can do the trick, there are other resources at your disposal to find an adult day services location that suits your needs. For example, you can visit local senior centers, find a professional association, or contact a local agency.
- Pay a Visit
If time permits, take a day or two to visit adult day centers in your area. If you find one that suits what you and your loved one are looking for, make an appointment for an in-person tour. Tours will provide you with tangible information about the community and its services. You can also speak with staff on their experiences and recommendations.
- Ask the Right Questions
Once you have secured an appointment to visit the center, it is important to ask the right questions. These can include questions about:
- Check References
References are a crucial part to choosing the right adult day center. Ask around and see what opinions your peers hold. Positive opinions are fantastic, but make sure to ask for honest recommendations to ensure you are making the best decision.
- Do a Trial Run
Your loved one may wish to visit the center for a couple days, which will get them acclimated and accustomed to the center. Although they may not feel comfortable right away, give it a few days and see how they feel afterwards.
- Take Care of Yourself
Remember to care for your needs and breathe easy that your loved one is getting the care they need and deserve. You can always call and ask questions about your loved one if needed. Ultimately, these steps will comfort you both on your journey to finding the right adult day center.
Join the Adult Day Service Community
At Encore at Avalon, we offer adult day services for senior citizens needing daytime support in a safe and caring community environment. Highlights of our day services include meals, medical administration, social activities, and more. Our highly trained professionals are dedicated to providing compassionate care to all adult day service participants. Call us today at 407-270-7500 or submit our contact form to learn more about our adult day service community.