December 30, 2019

Companion care is about providing older adults with the support and attention they need to thrive, using a two-pronged approach. On one side of things, companion care is about providing the kind of practical, everyday support that can empower seniors to age in place, as a caregiver steps in to help with running errands, tending to housekeeping, preparing meals, and so on. On the other side, companion care is also about providing older adults with emotional support and friendship, allowing them to nurture meaningful relationships and live life to the fullest.

With this in mind, who might benefit the most from companion care services? This type of affordable, flexible long-term care can create incredible value for… 

Seniors Who Could Use Some Friendly Company

Growing older can often mean having more difficulty keeping in touch with friends and family. As a result, studies suggest that 25 percent of older adults feel isolated, and 30 percent say they do not have any regular companionship. Becoming socially isolated can lead to some serious health complications for seniors over time. On the flip side? Older adults who are able to maintain strong social relationships as they age have been shown to experience better mental health, reduced rates of chronic illness, higher quality of life, and increased longevity overall. 

Companion care focuses on providing much-needed friendship and social support. Whether for a few hours a day or a few hours a week, a companion can spend valuable time with your loved one, providing a friendly face while joining the senior to play games, watch movies, share meals, or go on walks. Companions can also help make it easier for older adults to remain connected to their communities, giving them rides and assistance as they attend religious services, meet up with friends, or go to community events. 

Family Caregivers Who Need Some Respite

Millions of people around the country spend much of their time caring for their aging loved ones. Many of these individuals fall into the “Sandwich Generation” category, meaning that they’re responsible for providing care to older adults and younger children at the same time. As a caregiver, it’s easy to feel like you’re being pulled in many different directions at once. As a result, many unpaid family caregivers report feeling stressed, tired, and worn out. Research suggests that:

  • 70 percent of family caregivers report having feelings of depression 
  • Caregivers are 20 percent more likely to have high blood pressure 
  • Caregivers are 50 percent more likely to experience daily physical pain 
  •  45 of caregivers say that they do not have time to book or attend their own medical appointments
  • 51 percent of caregivers say that they do not have time to exercise

Companion care is sometimes called “respite care” for this reason: Because it’s an affordable, flexible way to allow caregivers to rest, recharge, and come back to caregiving feeling renewed and reinvigorated. 

Seniors Who Need Assistance With Activities of Daily Living

Activities of daily living (ADLs) are those routine, everyday tasks that many of us take for granted — but which can prove challenging for older adults. ADLs may include sitting and standing, taking care of grooming and personal hygiene, using the bathroom, dressing, and eating. There is also a category known as Instrumental Activities of Daily Living which includes more advanced ADLs, like shopping and running errands, managing medications, taking care of the household, or driving. 

If your senior loved one seems to be challenged by their ADLs, this could be a sign that it’s time to reach out for extra help. A companion can lend a hand in many different ways depending on your loved one’s needs — from providing assistance with grooming, bathing, and dressing, to helping out with meal preparation and service. 

Seniors Looking to Stay Active

Studies have shown that the vast majority of adults say that they would prefer to age in place over time. Remaining at home can be a great way for older adults to feel safe, comfortable, and healthy. It’s also a great way to motivate seniors to become active and engaged, especially with the assistance provided by an experienced senior companion. 

Companions can help provide the encouragement and support it takes to help seniors become more active and independent — physically, mentally, and socially. A companion can help an older adult stick to their exercise or fitness regimen, and provide support as they go on walks or pick up new activities around the house. Companions can also help stimulate their clients mentally, by playing games, taking up seasonal hobbies, or using art and music to connect. Finally, companions can provide invaluable social support, from sharing meals with the senior, to making it easier for them to spend quality time with their friends and family. 

Just as importantly, companion care can empower the elderly to remain connected with their communities, thanks to reliable driving services. Studies have indicated that half of all non-drivers who are 65 or older say that they sometimes feel forced to “stay at home” in a given day because “they don’t have transportation options.” Driving services can help empower seniors to attend doctor’s appointments, make it to religious services, explore their neighborhood, and go on outings, all with a trustworthy partner watching out for their health and safety at every step along the journey. 

Seniors Recovering From a Hospital Stay

According to reports, about 13 million seniors are hospitalized per year, and adults over 65 account for more than one-third of all hospital discharges. As many as 1.4 million seniors will also pay a visit to the ICU every year. The fact of the matter is that hospital visits and surgery are a fact of life for many older adults. A senior companion can help make this difficult process easier, especially after a hospital stay. 

While companions are not able to provide medical services, they can provide all kinds of non-medical support, from helping seniors keep track of their medications, to providing reminders for exercise and physical therapy routines, to offering reliable transportation for followup appointments and doctor’s visits. A companion can also provide emotional support, and give extra help with daily activities like bathing, using the bathroom, or getting dressed. In many cases, a senior companion can actually provide assistance to your loved one while they’re recovering in a hospital or rehab facility, making the transition back home feel easier down the line. 

Looking to Get Started With Companion Care?

Do you have an elderly loved one who could benefit from the personalized attention and support that a professional companion can provide? Do you have any questions, or want to discuss what may be the best course of action for you and your family moving forward? Companions for Seniors is here and happy to help.

At Companions for Seniors, our companions are trained and bonded, and can help your family shoulder some of the responsibilities of caring for an aging loved one. We are locally owned and operated in Chicago, with clients in the city and suburbs.

We help provide seniors with a higher quality of life, while also offering respite and peace of mind to family caregivers who might need some support. Our companions help stimulate our clients physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, empowering them to live an active and enriched lifestyle in the comfort and safety of their own homes. We also offer companionship services in hospitals or treatment centers. We can develop a personalized care plan specially suited for your senior loved one’s needs; as our client’s needs change, our plan of care can adapt to keep up. 

Have any questions about Companions for Seniors? Want to get in touch? Don’t hesitate to give us a call at 866-910-9020, or fill out our handy online contact form, available here.