When you are the caregiver for someone with a disability, you become accustomed to fulfilling their needs. But, as your loved one grows older, a mental or physical disability can worsen. You might find that you no longer have the resources to care for your loved one on your own. This can be a difficult realization for you and your family. But, it is important to determine what is best for your loved one. If your loved one is facing a mental or physical disability, you should consider the following care options.
Types of Disabilities
There are many different types of disabilities that your loved one might face. Your loved one may have been born with a disability. Or, it could be the result of an accident or illness. Regardless, you want the person taking care of your loved one to truly help them. A few common disabilities that your loved one might be facing include:
Hearing Loss or Deafness
Hearing loss can range from mild hearing issues to complete deafness. Your loved one might need help with a hearing aid or need a caretaker that speaks sign language. Also, your loved one may need help dealing with other people who do not speak sign language.
Blindness or Vision Problems
Vision issues can range from blurred vision to complete blindness. If your loved one has a vision problem, they will need help. They might need a caretaker to help them get from place to place and perform other everyday tasks. Also, your loved one should have access to doctor appointments to track their condition.
For many elderly people, mild to severe memory loss is part of the aging process. But, memory loss can also be the result of a brain injury or disease. If your loved one is suffering from short-term memory loss, they will need help with everyday tasks. In addition, they will need a patient and calm caretaker. Also, any elderly person with memory loss should be monitored for wandering or elopement.
Many people with autism struggle with communication and social skills. For this reason, a caretaker of an autistic person must have experience working through these issues. The caretaker should work on gaining the patient’s trust. A caretaker should help a patient feel safe and guide them through everyday tasks and encounters with other people.
Common causes of intellectual disabilities include Down syndrome, head injuries, and fetal alcohol syndrome. People with intellectual disabilities will need help communicating with others and performing everyday tasks.
Speech or Language Disorder
When a person has a speech or language disorder, they have trouble communicating. Those with speech disorders generally don’t have issues understanding other people. Instead, they have trouble speaking. They will need speech therapy and the help of another person to communicate. Those with language disorders have difficulty understanding the spoken or written word. They will need help with complex concepts and finding a way to understand others.
Mental illness can range from an issue with emotions, behavior, and understanding certain things. This illness is oftentimes misunderstood. It is important to find a caretaker who understands your loved one’s limitations.
Physical disabilities are oftentimes caused from paralysis, stiffness, or some type of impairment. These disabilities can also lead to other disabilities. These disabilities include memory loss, hearing or vision loss, and more. A caretaker for someone with a physical disability should help with many things. These things include movement, physical therapy, and everyday tasks.
If you feel that you can still care for your loved one part time, hiring a home health aide might be the best option. Keeping your loved one in their home and maintaining their routine might make this process easier for your loved one. But, if your loved one needs extensive care, you should consider sending them to a special care facility. These facilities will have the resources to help your loved one.
Elders with Disabilities and Abuse
Many people with disabilities are the subject of discrimination, neglect, and abuse. It is important to prevent these issues by working with a caretaker and communicating with your loved one consistently.