Like many other developed Western nations, Australia’s population is ageing. This is largely due to a higher life expectancy from lifestyle improvements and developments in modern medicine. In fact, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, over the past two decades the number of people aged 100 years and over in Australia has increased by 271 per cent!
Rather than move to an aged care facility, a vast majority of senior citizens prefer to live in the home they know.
If you have elderly relatives who would prefer to stay in their own home, here are some ways you can help them maintain their independence and physical and mental wellbeing.
Schedule companionship on a regular basis
As we get older and less mobile, our ability to travel around and join in with community activities can become increasingly difficult. As a result, the senior community is particularly vulnerable to feelings of loneliness and social isolation. One way to help prevent this is to sit down with your elderly relative to discuss what interests they would like to pursue or goals they would like to achieve in their senior years – such as volunteering or perhaps starting a new hobby. This can help to build a sense of purpose and encourage them to interact with their community.
Alternatively, if your loved one is reluctant to leave the house you can try Like Family. Like Family is passionate about ending social isolation and loneliness in the community. We match Social Carers with Members based on shared interests to foster genuine companionship. Our Carers can help your loved one with household tasks, errands, transportation, exercise and much more.
Check household safety
About one-third of people aged 65 years and over fall one or more times a year. These falls can cause fractures, bruises, and head injuries, as well as reduce someone's confidence in performing everyday activities.
Many of these falls happen at home, but can be easily prevented. Here are a few ways to ensure household safety:
- Remove any tripping hazards such as loose carpets, stray electrical cords or rugs that don’t lie flat
- Ensure the house is well lit including nightlights
- Fix any faulty kitchen appliances
- Secure any unsteady furniture around
- Ensure floors aren’t slippery
- Test smoke alarms regularly
Maintain good health
Injury and illness are the biggest risk factors for the elderly living at home alone. Therefore it is essential for seniors to stay as healthy as possible. This can be achieved by developing and maintaining a healthy diet, keeping physically active with regular exercise, drinking plenty of water and engaging in an active social life. Address any health issues that can impact confidence such as incontinence, hearing problems and vision problems, and make transport readily available.
Access to flexible, reliable assistance
Like many Australians, if you have work or young family commitments and are in need of someone to keep an eye on your elderly family living at home, Like Family can help. We offer an affordable aged care alternative for families with elderly relatives living at home who are seeking companionship and non-medical care services.
Our fully-vetted Social Carers visit private residences and residential care facilities in many parts of NSW, VIC and QLD. We provide a wide range of support to ageing community members such as providing companionship, transport to appointments, meal preparation and light housekeeping. Like Family matches our Members with Social Carers in their local area based on shared interests and requirements, so you can choose someone who is the right fit for your specific needs.
We charge fair hourly rates with no added fees. You only pay for the time you actually spend with the Social Carer, and payment is only made after the booking is complete. You can use your Home Care Package or NDIS funding with us, or pay independently.
Sign up to become a Member today and experience for yourself why we have over 100 5-star ratings on Google reviews.