The quality of life for seniors in Canada has changed immensely over the years and will continue increasing as time goes on. With the emergence of various innovations in the healthcare industry, policy changes, and reliable home care assistance programs, seniors are expected to live a lot longer than ever before. According to the World Health Organization, the life expectancy of seniors in Canada has increased significantly in the past two decades. Of course, longer life expectancies come with a host of challenges that some people believe the Canadian healthcare system isn’t prepared to handle. These include longer hospital stays, more assistance needed at home, and more physicians required to accommodate their needs.
Home care assistance programs that accurately match your elderly loved ones with the right caregivers can help to alleviate some of the stress and pressure that comes with treating seniors with various illnesses. Keep reading to learn how.
The Current State of Healthcare for Seniors in Canada
The reality is that the longer people live, the more likely it is that they’ll need some form of extensive healthcare or assistance at home. The 2016 Statistics Canada census states that there are currently 5.9 million seniors living in Canada and that number is perpetually on the rise. These numbers are high because for the first time since Confederation, the population of elderly people living in this country has surpassed the number of children under the age of 14 (5.8 million). Albeit the numbers are extremely close, but this information begs the question: what is the status of Canada’s healthcare system?
Despite the fact that Canada has a publicly funded healthcare system, a 2016 report released by the Canadian Medical Association contains a forward that features a scathing review of the current state of Canada’s healthcare system penned by the organization’s president, Dr. Granger Avery.
He lists all of the key ways in which our system is flawed including long wait times for patients, the inadequate transfers of patient information, and especially the discontinuity of patient care from one specialist to another. The solution to alleviating some of these grievances or at the very least, lessening their negative impact, is to secure the services of an exceptional and highly experienced in-home caregiver who can tend to your elderly loved one’s most pressing needs.
The Impact of Home Care Services for Seniors
Most seniors are able to lead healthy and happy lifestyles. They eat well, get plenty of exercise, and even have active social lives. However, sometimes they just need a little bit of help around the house, running errands, cooking nutritious meals for themselves, and reminders when they need to take their medications or go to doctor’s appointments.
On the other end of the spectrum, however, are those seniors who need constant monitoring due to serious health issues they’ve developed as they get older. Diseases like dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s can take a serious toll on their mental and physical health, preventing them from leading active lifestyles.
Regardless of the scenario at hand, it’s been proven that the advantages of home care for the elderly are manifold. As the saying goes, the proof is in the pudding. Here are a few areas in which there are demonstrable benefits of home-based care for seniors.
On average, women are expected to live a few years longer than men. Women between the ages of 65 and 74 accounted for approximately 65% of the senior population to receive in-home care in 2012. This disproportionately high representation of women as care receivers can be carried across all age groups, not strictly seniors. In total, it was reported that over two million Canadians received care in 2012.
Loneliness is often cited as one of the main reasons that seniors feel anxious, depressed, and stressed even when they’re living independently at home and on their own terms. Very few seniors willingly relocate to nursing homes because they crave normalcy and a sense of familiarity, not to mention independence. However, having a constant companion or even someone who just stops by once in a while to check in on your elderly loved one can help offset some of these feelings and boost their spirits.
While it won’t necessarily eradicate all of the effects of their mental illness, this is an excellent form of some much-needed social interaction for your elderly loved one. It’s also an excellent way to guarantee that they’re being well cared for by someone you trust.
According to Statistics Canada, mental illness is listed as one of the main reasons why people of all ages seek out or require at-home assistance, especially seniors. Approximately 1 in 7 Canadians sought at-home assistance for mental health purposes in 2012. Even though the numbers show that the need for mental illness at-home assistance waned as people got older, it’s possible that not as many members of the older generation are comfortable talking about their mental health needs.
Hospital Admittance and Palliative Care
Caregivers provide so much more than just emotional or physical support for your elderly loved one. Many of them have extensive training in the medical field as well and are capable of administering medications and basic medical procedures such as CPR. Seniors who are in hospital or palliative care for a serious illness need someone by their side who’s prepared to handle potential medical emergencies should the need arise.
Injury Reduction Rates
Elderly citizens who receive regular in-home care from thoroughly trained and experienced caregivers are less likely to sustain any type of injury due to a fall or accident. Since the caregiver will be present at all times, they can assist your elderly loved one move around with ease, drive them wherever they need to go, and perform certain tasks for them to prevent injuries from occurring.
Home Care Assistance in Burlington, Milton, Hamilton, and Oakville
At Laurentian Retirement Services, we’re dedicated to offering premier customized in-home care for seniors living in Burlington and the rest of the Halton Hills region. Our services are formulated specifically for seniors who prefer to continue living independently but still require some assistance from time to time or on a regular basis. We also offer a reliable meal delivery program for your elderly loved one to provide them with nutritious and delicious menu items of their choosing. To learn more about how our in-home care services can benefit your elderly loved one, contact us.