Family & Caregivers

Home Care Options: Types of Home Care and More

April 5, 2022
An older woman in a wheelchair with younger relatives

Your home matters. It is where you build your life, make important memories with loved ones, and showcase your accomplishments. The home you’ve created is something to be proud of - it’s a valuable part of you and your identity. 

And you’re not alone in feeling this way. Older adults reflect this sentiment on a societal level—according to the American Advisors Group (AAG), 92% of seniors would prefer to spend their later years in the comfort of their own homes. 

As you age, health challenges arise that can make it challenging to maintain your independent life at home. If you or your loved one’s goal is to increase physical autonomy and age at home and with dignity, in-home care might be the right option for you. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 4.5 million people sought home care in 2015.

We understand, however, that the abundance of home care options in the United States is overwhelming. That’s why we’re here to help you decode the nuances and variations in American home care so that you can make an informed decision about aging in the comfort of your home.

This article will break down what each type of home care includes and help you determine which might be best for you or your loved one. Let’s get started!

Why Home Care?

In-home senior care helps preserve and enhance the quality of life for those who need assistance with their activities of daily living (or ADLs, for short), amongst other needs. 

Activities of daily living include:

  • Feeding.
  • Ambulating (moving and transporting).
  • Dressing.
  • Hygiene.
  • Continence.
  • Toileting.
  • Other specific daily activities.

In-home care is a careful and mindful approach to assisting with these challenges of aging.  When performed well, in-home care is compassionate, dignifying, and comforting. It can help you:

  • Achieve self-sufficiency. 
  • Maintain independence.
  • Heal from injury or sickness.
  • Preserve your dignity and identity

Home care is also often less expensive than skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, assisted living homes, and hospice facilities. 

What is Home Care? Home Care Types

Home care and home health care encompass a wide variety of services. All types of home care involve in-home visits by a home health aide or personal care aid to assist you or your loved one with various needs (often surrounding ADLs).

There are many kinds of home care and each company offers different services. . However, some of the most common forms of in-home care for seniors and people with disabilities  include:

  1. Family-provided in-home care. Oftentimes family members or friends provide care for their loved ones. However, full-time familial caregiving can become tiring if done alone and without further support. While this type of care is common, supplementary assistance of a home health aide or personal caregiver may still be required, especially if the unpaid family caregiver is also working another job. 
  2. Home care or personal care does not include nursing but instead usually focuses on helping clients with non-medical activities of daily living, such as cleaning, cooking, errands, and companionship. Private home care agencies  may offer personal care assistance.
  3. Home health care involves visits from doctors, nurses, and certified nursing assistants (who work under the supervision of a nurse) who provide medical care. Home health aides can dispense medications, help with bathing and dressing, measure vitals, assist with medical equipment, help with other personal care tasks, and provide additional medical services. Home health care can also include hospice services and skilled nursing visits. These medical services are usually offered through private home health agencies.
  4. Home therapy. Home care may also involve other forms of home-care include types of therapy, such as, speech therapy, which can help older adults communicate more effectively and recover from speech difficulties that result from conditions like dementia or stroke. Home therapy may also involve physical therapy, which may address neuropathic, orthopedic, heart-related issues, and more. Last, home therapy may also include occupational therapy, which helps elderly people (and people of all ages) better perform their activities of daily living 

It is possible (and sometimes the best option) to utilize two or more types of home care at once. For example, if you are a primary caregiver helping your senior loved one with their ADLs every day, you may benefit from occasional respite through hiring a home health aide or personal caregiver on some days of the week.

Choosing the Best Home Care Options for You

The best home care options for your particular situation will depend on you or your loved one’s needs, desires, and limitations. To figure out which types of home care or in-home assistance are right for you, first take a look at where you currently see areas to improve you or your loved one’s quality of life. 

Are there certain limitations you currently have that you’d like to overcome? Are there specific ADLs with which you or your loved one need assistance? Are any diseases or conditions holding you or your loved one back from living your/their best life?

To figure out which type of home care might be best for you, consider the following factors:

  • The particular ADLs you would like to receive help with.
  • How many days a week you require in-home care assistance.
  • Your existing medical conditions and medical needs.
  • Your budget.
  • Whether your family caregiver might need respite or assistance.
  • You or your family caregiver’s comfort level: what role does the person in need of care envision for a potential home caregiver?

Weighing these considerations will make it easier for you to determine which type of home care is best for you or your loved one.

Affording Home Care

No matter the type of home care that you decide is best for your particular situation, cost and financial responsibility might impact your decision. Private insurance companies,Medicaid, and Medicare cover in-home personal care or in-home health care under certain conditions, but this is not always the case. 

Even if insurance does cover your in-home care costs, your policy may only cover a certain portion of what you need, or you may need to wait months before you can access your medical funds. Long-term care insurance is another option for paying for each type of home care, but sometimes long-term care insurance can limit your in-home care options. 

You may also consider cashing out on your life insurance policy, but this usually does not provide an adequate amount of cash to pay for home care. Even choosing a reverse-mortgage to help you pay for you or your loved one’s home care only unlocks a portion of your equity.

Truehold can significantly expand your options for types of home care you can afford. Our unique and simple lease-back solution can help you liquify your investments when you need it most so that you can pay for care or use this financial cushion for any of your personal needs. 

Through Truehold, you can unlock your equity for a small fee and use the money you’ve earned through your housing investment to continue living in your home while you age in place.

If you or a loved one are seeking support with physical challenges, home care can help you achieve your individual goals - it’s just a matter of choosing a home care provider that is right for your needs and determining how you can fund quality home care. 

Truehold understands how important it is for seniors to remain in their homes while they receive care and works hard to make a variety of care options more accessible for older adults and those who require special accommodations. To learn more about how to pay for your at-home care by unlocking your home’s equity, visit Truehold’s guide on aging at home while preserving wealth and wellbeing.

Get a free info kit to learn more about Truehold's Sale-Leaseback.

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