At what point should I be considering a care home for my loved one?

Is your loved one struggling to live alone even with the help of family members, friends, relatives or carers? After your loved one has experienced a fall, did the hospital evaluation indicate that specialised care is necessary? If your answer to these questions is a resounding yes, it may be time for you to consider a care home for your loved one. 

A care home can provide home from home comforts as well as supervising and assisting  your loved ones when they need it as well as keeping them entertained with a full activities programme . A registered care home also provides the highest standard of nursing care, especially if they have a physical disability, medical condition, high dependency requirement or if they need end of life care. In some cases, loved ones may require both support with activities of daily living and nursing care.

Things to look out for that show my relative isn’t coping so well on their own anymore

The right time to consider a care home may not be clear for some individuals or families, but to others, it could be caused by a critical situation. For instance, a relative of yours may have fallen and was taken to hospital. It may become clear that your relative may not be able to return to live at home alone. Although this can be a very difficult and emotional situation, you must be there to emotionally support your loved one and help them to make the best decision for their future. 

For some people living on their own, the changes to their physical abilities and overall wellbeing can be moderately slow. You may not be sure of the right time to consider a care home for them however, there are things that you can look out for.

  • Eating Patterns. Have you noticed something different in the eating pattern of your relatives? Are their meals untouched? Is food in their kitchen not consumed as expected? According to several studies, about 3 million people in the UK are considered malnourished or at risk of being malnourished and people over the age of 65 are the demographic that has the highest risk.
  • Medications. Older adults often have health conditions and depend on their medications to keep it under control. If you are keeping a close eye on your relatives, you may be helping them to remember what medications to take and when to take them or lovingly reminding them to take it but if you can see that your relatives are consistently missing their medications, this is a sign that they need a little more support.
  • Altered Mental States. It’s a good idea to look out for any signs of confusion or disorientation as it can pose a risk to the personal safety of your loved one. These issues can occur at any time of the day and maybe characterised by a change in their behaviour. For instance, your loved one may seem clear headed and composed all day however you may be receiving a series of distressed calls in the evening. 
  • Significant Deterioration in Physical Abilities. Have they fallen more than once already? Are they having issues with mobility, perhaps struggling to move around their home has become a lot more difficult for them, or has their physical movement in general started to deteriorate? 
  • Low Spirits. Are your relatives showing any signs of feeling lonely, maybe depressed or isolated? They might be suffering from depression due to social isolation.

Maybe your loved one is physically well however is suffering with loneliness and struggling with  running a home for themselves, they may want to consider residential care. Residential care will liberate them from the stress of managing their own household and enjoy the benefits of living with other like-minded individuals. This type of care will lead them to enjoy an active social life, as well as boost their independence and self-confidence. 

As a final note, if you are concerned with the welfare of your loved one, then it is always best to seek professional advice. As well as discussing with your relative their feelings and maybe apprehensions on the next steps. Remember that there are many types of support available. 

If you and your relatives live in Swindon and the surrounding areas, you can talk to Ridgeway Rise about their facilities and high-quality care services. You can call them on 01793 238 875 or send an email on

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