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Advantages and Disadvantages Of Residential Care Homes for the Elderly

Julie Lord

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When it comes to caring for elderly relatives there are several care options available all with advantages and disadvantages. In many ways no care option for an elderly person is perfect so it is a matter of finding the best compromise. Some old people want nothing more than to sta in their own home whilst others may be happy to go and live in a residential care home so they no longer have the worry and responsibility of maintain a home that has probably become too big for them

There are options like sheltered housing, warden assisted properties and live-in care or home care in addition to residential care homes but the right choice is very dependent on the individuals’ preference but also their care needs and medical or nursing needs.

Residential care homes are often a preferred choice when an elderly relative can no longer be cared for at home for whatever reason. Understanding those advantages and disadvantages of a residential care home will help you and your elderly relative plan for and cope with the transition better.

The Advantages Of Residential Care Homes

- They are safe, secure places with carers and other staff around 24/7 to offer care and support.

- Some homes have qualified nursing staff to deal with complex medical needs.

- Everybody has their own private room so they can have some of their treasured possessions with them and have their own television for entertainment.

- Meals are provided so nutritional needs, including specific diets of each person, can be catered for

- Residential care homes provide a social aspect, with a ready made community of similarly aged people. Games and activities are regularly arranged for those who wish to take part.

- Those carer who have residential care home jobs tend to enjoy caring for the elderly, and know how to brighten their lives.

- Medical care can be obtained straight away if needed.

The Disadvantages Of Residential Care Homes

- There is no getting away from it - care homes are very expensive. So if your relative has to pay for it themselves (because they have savings or other assets) then care costs can very quickly eat into someone's life savings. The family home may also need to be sold to cover costs if there is no partner still living there.

- If, after some time, savings have run out and a person can no longer pay for the care home they risk being moved to a less expensive home by the authorities, with all the upheaval and upset that could cause to an elderly person.

- It can be hard to find a care home that an individual likes and which has a free room

- A person may feel isolated because they have been taken away from their friends and neighbours.

- Adult children can feel guilty when they place their aging parent(s) into a care home.

- The elderly parent may feel resentful to their family for being placed in a care home and may not understand why they cannot stay in their own home.

- There is naturally less privacy in a care home than in one's own home.

- Moving into a residential home often means your giving up beloved pets.

There are advantages and disadvantages to all types of elderly care but remember that residential care homes are not the only choice. Increasing numbers of people are opting for live-in care or homecare in order to stay in their own home, retain some measure of independence and privacy and avoid high care home fees .

Whatever choice of care option you and your elderly relative prefer, remember that it is important to know all about the pros and cons of any type of elderly care that you might choose. Being well-informed will help you make the right decision.


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