There is no more noble decision that a person can make than to take care of an aging loved one. Taking on day-to-day care is hard, stressful and demanding. It also offers great rewards and an opportunity to bond with someone one you love in a very unique way. The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that nearly 15.5 million Americans make this choice. While the tireless efforts of these individuals are appreciated, it is important to realize they need support too.

Why Family Caregivers Need Breaks

Family caregivers need to take time away from their aging loved ones for many reasons. These might include to work a job outside the home, make time for their own medical appointments, enjoy a social outing or even sleep. When they forgo these things, it causes a physical and emotional load to build up on the individual. This often leads to depression, anxiety, physical health problems and even suicidal ideations. It can also impact the care recipient in negative ways by making it much more difficult for the caregiver to continue to meet day-to-day needs.

What Respite Care Does

Having respite care in place is the key for every family caregiver. This essentially means that someone else comes in, takes care of the 100 things you do every day and gives you some time off. A reliable respite care provider can help with things like meal preparation, shopping, running errands, taking a loved one to a medical appointment or helping them to safely get out of bed, reach the toilet or get dressed. Companionship and supervision are also important services provided through respite care. The care provider can be a friend, a family member a volunteer at your local church or a professional caregiver through an agency like Salus Homecare Los Angeles.

When Senior Loved Ones Are Resistant

When approached about the idea of bringing respite support into the home, some seniors are resistant. If you encounter this, it often helps to include your loved one in the decision. Explain why you need a little help and some time away. Let your loved one know that this does not mean you plan to abandon them. In fact, having respite care will help to better prepare you to offer the best care. Plan to interview home care agencies to find one that is the right fit for your family. Ask about credentials, hiring practices, safety standards, trainings and accreditations. When it comes time to meet the caregivers, involve your loved one. Encourage them to ask questions too. Make the meetings social and watch for indications that bonding is taking place. If your aging loved one bonds with your respite care provider, leaving the home will be easier and stress-free.


Another factor to consider when hiring a respite care provider is that your needs might change with time. With an agency like Salus Homecare Los Angeles, respite care is available on an hourly basis. It is always easy to move from part-time to full-time care. Your family can also arrange for 24-hour assistance should you need to travel away from home overnight without your loved one. This is also a handy option if you fall ill and the senior needs longer term or even permanent around the clock care from someone other than you. With the right level of support in place, your loved one can continue to safely aging in place no matter what life throws your family’s way.

Respite care is for every family caregiver. It is a necessary service and provides value to you and your aging loved one. If you are feeling burnt out or ready to take a break from caregiver responsibilities, Salus Homecare Los Angeles is always here to help. Call us, and let us know how we can support you.

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