Caring nurse talks with senior female patient

What Is Respite Care and Why Is it Needed?

Those family members who care for a senior loved one in their home often face stressful circumstances every day. The emotional, physical and economic challenges of today’s caregivers can become overwhelming unless they find some type of personal support. That’s what respite care provides. It’s usually offered in places such as assisted living communities, residential centers, adult day care centers or health care centers.

Respite senior care offers invaluable relief to caregivers by providing them a break from their daily duties to someone who is sick or disabled. Even the most invincible individuals may need help now and then. Letting someone else support your loved one for a while can give the caregiver a sense of renewal both physically and mentally and actually make them better as a spouse or parent. It’s the ideal way to gain freedom from difficult responsibilities while a loved one still receives the quality care they deserve in a professional environment.

How Long Does Respite Care Last?

Breaks can be as long or short as you desire. From a few hours and an entire day, to a couple hours or a week, a range of health care centers and residential centers are designed to accommodate your loved one’s needs.

The respite break for caregivers gives them the opportunity to rejuvenate or relax. Being on their own for even just a few hours can help calm a person and bring a renewed sense of purpose. Caregivers can get out to partake in activities they may have given up supporting their loved one like:

  • Spending time with friends and family members
  • Running errands and going to scheduled appointments
  • Taking in a movie, lecture or museum tour
  • Relaxing with a massage or simply a long nap
  • Exercising or taking a new class
  • Going on vacation or out of town

Think of it as a way to recharge your batteries – and your loved ones’. He or she may appreciate a new change in scenery, meeting like-minded seniors and participating in social activities that motivate them.

What are Respite Care Services?

Respite care is offered in a variety of settings including independent living, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing. A care assessment will be completed prior to the respite stay. Based off of the assessment, a personalized care plan will be created and followed to meet the needs of the respite guest.

What Is the Cost of Respite Care?

Depending on the type of community, how long care is needed, and the respite services used, cost will vary. Talk to the community providing the care and ask for the most ideal payment method for your specific situation. Sometimes certain long-term care insurance policies cover respite care, and Medicare and Medicaid may help. Most other insurance will not pay for respite care. You can check with government or private programs to see if you qualify for their assistance.

Seniors Can Give the Community a Test Run.

A real advantage to both the caregiver and the senior in respite care is that the short break can give them both the opportunity to try out the community to see if it is a good fit for the senior now or later. By connecting with the staff, interacting with residents and participating in on-site activities, you will both get a feel for the environment and get better acquainted with how it fits your loved one’s needs.

If you need a break from your daily care routine or know someone who does, contact Willow Care Rehabilitation and Health Care Center for information about our complete services in Hannibal, Missouri.