When people think about home care they generally think of older people, but there are also younger who need care as well. Often this is temporary and is typically for post-surgical care and rehab care. It is sadly not limited to this but can also be for other conditions such as early-onset dementia, Parkinson’s, neuromuscular care, and even stroke care. The other common time that we care for younger people is respite care.
Caring for younger people presents its own set of issues. These clients are used to being more active and therefore need more stimulation than an older person. Both need stimulation, but the degree varies.
There are of course overlaps in the needs of our clients across the age groups and each group and each condition presents its own opportunity and challenges. The difference between dealing with different ages can be startling. Young folks are often stronger and therefore if they lash out as some dementia patients sometimes do the danger to the caregiver is greater. It can also help with exercises and physiotherapy but on the flip side, they anticipate faster progress and so can become demoralized more easily.
One thing that may seem surprising is that there is little difference in motivation between the age groups. Across both groups, there are those who are very motivated and those who seem to give up. We work to encourage people and believe that in most cases disability stems mainly from attitude. We see this often. Attitude determines the speed of recovery, and the ability to handle the impairment or change.
Caregivers need to have a broad understanding of how to deal with each category of those they care for. This applies not only to the physical and mental condition but also to how age impacts on the needs of the client and how it impacts on their handling of the condition they have. After having been vital for so much of their lives, young clients can be very resentful of incapacity be it from Parkinson’s, amputation, or whatever other cause.
We understand these differences and take pride in being available for everyone.