Frequently Asked Questions

My dad insists that he is never going to a nursing home. How do I know if he’s safe, and if he can stay home?

Email us for your free copy of the Independent Living Questionnaire. We’ll share red flags and strategies to minimize risks.

My wife has always been the strong one in our marriage. Lately she’s been distracted and forgetting things like the grandkids’ holiday concert. Should I be worried?

More concerned than worried. It could just be the holidays that are adding stress, or she could have some depression or seasonal affective disorder, or some more serious memory changes. It’s worth investigating for certain. Suggest to her that you’re concerned and that you would like her doctor to evaluate her. It could be thyroid changes, B12 deficiency – something treatable. Depression is more common in older adults who have other illnesses, so that might be an issue too.

I’ve worked hard to save my money and I have long term care insurance, so I’ll never need a nursing home, right?

Home care is expensive. Ability to pay for it is not the only thing that keeps people out of nursing homes. Contact us for the Six Essential Elements to Avoid a Nursing home.

How do you introduce the idea that home care might be needed?

There are several domains to consider, including physical frailty, nutrition, falls and household management. We have a checklist you can download.  A check in any of these domains indicates more care may be needed. Use the checklist to start the conversation.

Dad had another little fender bender and the doctor said he cannot drive. Got any ideas how I’m going to make that a reality?

There are some terrific resources for conversations about driving. Step one is to acknowledge the psychological impact of this new development. Next, you need a plan for transportation needs. For people with dementia, you may need to actually disable the car (such as by removing the distributor cap) or other extreme measures. Information is available in our Resources section.

I hear one thing from a friend, another thing from the TV and a third from the web – who can you trust for unbiased information?

We like the National Institutes on Aging and Health and other reliable non-governmental non-profit organizations (e.g. American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, etc.).  You can tell if they are non-profit because they have .org at the end of the website – .com means commercial and as soon as you know someone’s selling something, you’ve got to think “this might be biased.” Sometimes .com sites have valuable information, but it can be difficult to assess on your own. Unless your friend works in the medical field, take it with a grain of salt. We also put little faith in TV unless we know the backgrounds of the speakers. Lastly, learn to read research critically. We’ll post some tips in our blog.