Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a condition that affects a person’s ability to move. It is typically diagnosed in people who are between the ages of 40 and 60. The disease is progressive, which means that the symptoms get worse as time goes on. Eventually, a person with ALS will be completely dependent on someone else to accomplish all daily activities as they will be wheelchair-bound. Because of the level of care needed for someone who has ALS, many families choose to hire home care through an agency. Home care providers can assist with the non-medical aspects of care needed by people with ALS, such as the 5 listed below.
When ALS first begins, the older adult may only need help with things like buttoning shirts or tying shoes as their hands may be affected, making them clumsy and lacking manual dexterity. As time goes on and the person cannot stand, it can be helpful for family caregivers to have the assistance of a home care provider since there will be lifting involved to pull pants up and get a shirt over the senior’s head.
At first, the older adult will be able to feed themselves, though they may need to use some specialized utensils that are easier to hold. However, they may not be able to cook since lifting pots and dishes may be too difficult. Home care providers can cook meals for the senior, paying attention to both nutritional needs and what is easiest for them to eat. When swallowing becomes difficult, the kinds of foods the older adult can eat may change. When that happens, the home care provider can change the kinds of food they make to reduce the chances the senior will choke.
Bathing can be difficult and unsafe for the older adult to do on their own almost from the onset of the disease. They may have problems lifting their legs high enough to step over the side of the bathtub, which could cause a fall. Home care can assist the senior to get in and out of the tub. Later, when the older adult can no longer use their arms, a home care provider can help them to wash as well as making sure they stay safe.
Even in the early stages of the disease, your aging relative will probably tire easily. When home care providers take care of the housework, the seniors can save their energy to do the things they enjoy. Home care providers can do everything from dusting to vacuuming to doing the dishes.
Once the senior starts having significant problems with their legs, they will need help getting in and out of chairs and beds. Once they are wheelchair-bound, they will need to be lifted to transfer. Doing transfers alone can be difficult and unsafe for untrained family caregivers. The caregiver may hurt themselves or the older adult. A home care provider is trained to safely transfer seniors without injury to either of them.
Are you or a loved one considering hiring Homecare in Conway, AR? First Choice Senior Care can help. Serving all of Little Rock and Central Arkansas. Please call and talk to our caring staff today. (501) 916-9307
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