Professional Caregiving VS Family Caregiving

Jul 28, 2017

Professional Caregiving VS Family Caregiving

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As our loved ones grow older, it can often leave us in a tricky situation regarding the care of our seniors. Most will be faced with two options. You can either decide to handle the aspect of senior care using your own family, or you can leave it up to a professional organization. While many have differing opinions on the battle of professional caregiving vs family caregiving, it’s important to note that the number one concern should be whether or not your loved one is getting the care that he or she deserves. Below we’re going to compare both professional caregiving and family caregiving so you can make sure you’re making a well-informed decision when it comes to your loved one’s health.

Professional Caregiving VS Family Caregiving

The Mental Toll

One of the biggest reasons that family caregiving doesn’t work out is simply the mental strain it puts on both the senior and the family caregiver(s) as well. While it’s nice to have someone that’s familiar taking care of you, it can often create tension within the family. Taking care of a loved one can often be very stressful, and can quickly lead to caregiver burnout or caregiver guilt. You might begin to feel tired and worn out, and if not acknowledged, caregiver burnout can lead to even more health issues. Caregiver guilt can also gnaw away at you as many feel like they’re not providing enough care for his or her loved ones. 

On the contrary, many feel guilty about putting their loved one in a nursing community or having a professional caregiver take control. It’s important to really sit down and decide how caregiving will affect both you and your loved one mentally before deciding, which is the best option.

The Price

Another major debate when it comes to professional caregiving VS family caregiving is deciding which option makes the most sense financially. Hiring a professional caregiver or putting your loved one in a nursing home can be very costly. With room and board expenses and the cost of medical services, the bills can quickly add up. If your loved one does not qualify for Medicaid or other forms of financial aid, it can become difficult to pay for professional caregiving. If your family member has long-term care insurance, it may cover some home care. Some policies permit family members to be paid, although the policies may exclude people who live in the same household.  

Many who choose to care for their loved ones on their own aren’t aware that they can actually get financial support for being a caregiver. Several states offer tax benefits to family caregivers, which can compensate for spending on services such as home modifications. Often times, these tax breaks and incentives are very small. It can also be tough to balance work with caring for a loved one because many companies don’t have any provisions in place for caregivers. Many do not offer paid leave, which can put a financial strain on family caregivers.

Quality of Care

One of the toughest situations when it comes to the professional caregiving VS family caregiving debate is deciding whether or not you are able to provide the quality of care that your loved one needs and deserves. If you decide to use family caregiving, it’s important that you can be honest with yourself when it comes to the quality of care you can provide your loved one. This is a big responsibility to undertake, and if you don’t have the time or resources to care for your loved one, it might be time to look into professional caregiving. 

If you do decide to pursue professional care, make sure you do your research when it comes to a caregiver or nursing community. These professionals are going to be responsible for taking care of your loved one, so it’s important to make sure they are in good hands. Make sure you’re interviewing potential caregivers if they’re going to be coming to your home. Unfortunately, not all caregivers are equipped to handle all situations, so make sure you’re reviewing all candidates. If you are looking into potential nursing homes, take a tour of the facility so you can make sure it’s a place that your loved one will feel comfortable in. Your senior’s comfort is important, so make sure you’re doing everything you can to ensure that.

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