If it has not already been debated,
the possibility of leaving your loved one alone in your home is
certainly bound to occur. You will no doubt have many questions to
ponder as you decide upon the prospects of leaving them such as, will
they attempt to go outside?, will they hurt themselves?, or will they
need emergency assistance? This difficult question involves you the
caregiver, and your loved one, who was once an independent person. The
both of you will usually disagree with the situation, as it is normal
for caregivers to feel their loved one cannot be alone, while they
believe they are fine and healthy enough to be alone for how ever long.
Asking other family members, health care professionals, and other
caregivers for advice will go a long way to determining the likelihood
of their safety being jeopardized when left alone. Some other important
questions to consider before leaving them alone for the first time, or
if you are questioning whether they are able to stay alone any longer
Are they capable of calling 911 or
neighbors if an emergency occurs?
Can they distinguish friends and
family from strangers if they are faced with answering the door or
having someone enter the home?
If they are hungry, can they
prepare and eat a meal without your assistance?
Is it easy for them to use the
bathroom without your help, or do they require aid every time. Are
there any other plans in place if they are not able to go to the
bathroom without your help?
How does their behavior and
temperament change from when you leave to when you return? Do they
appear angered or scared at the first sign of you leaving the house?
In case of emergency are they able
to leave the home and seek shelter outside?
Are they aware of smoke alarms and
unusual noises, which may trigger danger, or are they likely to
overlook all such noises?
Do they suffer from Alzheimer�s or
dementia, and if so are they likely to wander off and get lost
Are they routinely experiencing
emergencies, which places their life in jeopardy? Do they suffer
from epilepsy, or shortness of breath that may need to be monitored
all the time?
Do they get lonely easily and feel
deserted at the slightest moment of your absence?
Can they be destructive at times
of stress and sickness and cause damage to themselves and your home
in the process?
Depending on your answers to these
questions, your decision on the possibility of leaving your loved one
home alone should be clearer. If your answers gave you a sense of
dissatisfaction, it is in your best interest to find assistance through
a family member or home care aide who can stay with them while you are
gone. But if the answers to the questions were comforting, you may still
be able to leave your loved one alone, although you must regularly check
up on their progress to ensure their safety in the future. This is
certainly not an easy situation for all involved, but understand your
own feelings and be strong-minded when making the most sensible and safe
decision for all involved.
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