When Is It Time for Home Health Care Skip to content

The Right Time for Home HealthCare 

Published: Dec 29, 2022. Last Updated: Jan 6, 2023.

Adults aged 65 and older make up at least 15% of the population in the US[1]. Health starts to deteriorate specifically during this time and you may require special care at most. Whether you or your loved one reached the golden years and is experiencing hardships in carrying out daily activities, know that there is an aid you can always consider when things get tough-Home Health Care.

But, how do you know when it's time to consider Home Health Care? Here are 12 signs to look out for:

1. Diagnosis of A Serious Illness

If your elderly loved one has just been diagnosed with a chronic or terminal illness, home health care may be an ideal option to ensure that they are receiving the medical attention and care they need. Home health care can effectively manage a variety of conditions, such as:

  • Stroke, heart failure, and other heart conditions
  • Diabetes
  • COPD and other respiratory conditions
  • Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Rheumatoid arthritis and other progressive neurological conditions
  • Cancer

2. Recent Surgery or Injury

Your older parent may require home health care following major surgery or after being injured. Having a professional to look after them can help in the recuperation process and could be beneficial for their recovery

3. Multiple Chronic Health Conditions

Multiple chronic health conditions can lead to a sudden decline in senior's health. Home health care is the best option for this case, as a professional can provide help with medical tasks such as blood sugar monitoring and providing oxygen therapy.

4. Cognitive Changes

Exhibiting cognitive changes such as confusion, memory loss or disorientation can be a sign that your elderly loved one needs help. Home health care can provide assistance in these cases, as they have the experience and knowledge to understand how to handle individuals with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

5. Mobility Issues

Balance and strength start to deteriorate with age, which impacts mobility. For example, you may see your older parents having to grab onto the furniture when walking or appearing unstable when getting up from a chair. Even if they don't hurt themselves during a fall, it can be an indication that they need help. Understandably, many adults' reaction to falling is by moving less overall. But then this lack of activity makes it harder to perform everyday tasks and raises the risk of future falls.

6. Frequent Visits to Hospital or Emergency Room

Among the top reasons older adults get admitted to the hospital are heart failure, pneumonia, COPD, and stroke. In addition to being costly and inconvenient, repeated hospitalizations can impact aging adults’ health and lower their quality of life. This is why, when your loved one is frequently visiting the hospital or emergency room, it maybe time for Home Health Care

7. Changes in Routine and Lost of Interest in Activities

If you notice you parent has recently stopped doing their usual activities, home health care can help get them back on track.

Some signs that they may need assistance are:

  • Unopened mail piling up or an overflowing mailbox
  • Bounced checks and late payment notices in the mail
  • Mysterious dents and scratches on their automobiles
  • Trouble driving a car
  • Forgetting to turn off appliances, blow out candles, or turn off the stove

8. Poor Medication Management

Forgetting to take medication or taking the incorrect dosage can have dangerous consequences. Home health care professionals can help your elderly family member stay on track with their medications, as well as provide reminders and ensure that they are taking the right amount at the right time.

9. Lost or Gained a Noticeable Amount of Weight

An increase or decrease in weight might be a symptom of an underlying medical problem, but it can also signify that they are struggling with mental health. Home health care professionals can help your elderly family member with any physical or mental issues they may have and provide nutritional guidance to get back to a healthy weight.

10. Social Isolation

Isolation can cause mental and physical deterioration in older adults at the same rate as smoking cigarettes or being obese. Senior family members may stop doing things they used to love, like traveling or seeing family, because it has become too difficult physically or cognitively. While this reaction is common, social isolation is an issue that needs to be addressed, especially for seniors. Home health care can provide companionship and help them stay connected with the outside world. This helps to keep their spirits up, as well as reduce any risks of depression or anxiety, as well as dementia and other health issues.

11. Uncharacteristic Mood Swings or Behavioral Changes

A change in behavior may indicate that a senior is struggling to cope with a new situation or is having difficulty adjusting to their life. This can be a sign that they may need emotional support and help in managing their feelings. Home health care professionals can provide guidance on how to handle these changes, as well as provide them with the right mental health resources if needed.

12. Poor Home or Personal Hygiene

Maybe you notice the house is becoming messy, with trash not being taken out or food rotting in the fridge. Perhaps you’ve begun to notice that your father isn’t showering or shaving anymore. While symptoms like this may seem like simple forgetfulness, it’s important to remember that rotten food in the refrigerator may indicate that your parents aren't eating and that poor personal hygiene can put your parents at risk of infection.

Home health care professionals can provide your elderly family member with assistance in maintaining proper hygiene, as well as ensure that they are eating a nutritious diet. They can also help them to identify any underlying medical issues that may be causing the changes in hygiene.

Signs You Need Help As Caregiver

Caregivers are constantly handling harsh tasks and responsibilities that come with caring for another person day in and day out. There's no doubt caregiving has its tough times. So if you are feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and unable to cope with all of your caregiving responsibilities, you may need help.

If you are demonstrating any of the following as a caregiver, it may be time to get some help with health home care services:


When you're constantly tired and unable to keep up with your caregiver duties, it might be time to seek help. Exhaustion can cause feelings of being overwhelmed, stressed out, and unfocused at work. If you find yourself feeling this way, it's important to take a break and seek help from health home care services.

Difficulty Concentrating

Forgetting important information or instructions can be dangerous for the one you are caring for, so if you are having trouble concentrating and staying focused, it may be time to get help from health home care services. Imagine how you would feel if you were the one in need of care and your caregiver wasn't paying attention to your needs.

Impatience and Irritability

When you're feeling overwhelmed, it's natural to be short-tempered with the patient who depend on you for care. Being a caregiver is a demanding job and it can be easy to become impatient. Not only is this unfair to the one receiving care, but it can also lead to feelings of guilt and shame. So if you're finding it difficult to remain patient, take a break and get help from health home care services.


The point of having a caregiver is to make sure the senior receives the best care possible. If you're feeling like you're making mistakes that could potentially harm your elderly loved one, it's important to get help from health home care services as soon as possible. Mistakes shouldn't be taken lightly, especially when you are caring for seniors with chronic health conditions, as a single mistake can be detrimental to their health.

Isolation and Loss of Social Life

The responsibilities of a caregiver can often take up so much of your time and energy that you don't have any left for yourself. If you're not making enough time to see friends or engage in activities that make you happy, it can lead to feelings of isolation and depression. It's important to prioritize yourself once in a while so that you don't become too isolated. Taking the time to relax and re-energize can be beneficial for both you and your senior. Home health care services can help you find a balance between caring for yourself and your loved one.

Sickness or Injury

You need to be mentally and physically healthy to be a great caregiver for your elderly loved one. If you've been injured or fallen sick, it's important to take some time off and seek help from health home care services. Trying to keep up with caregiving duties while not feeling your best can worsen an injury or illness and put the elderly at risk of harm.

No one should push themselves to the point of burnout while caring for their elderly loved one. If you're experiencing any of the signs mentioned above, take a break and seek help from home health care services. Home health care not only provides a well-rounded care plan that includes medical and personal care, but it can also help make life easier for both you and your older parent. It's important to remember that taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of those who need you most.


  1. https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2018/03/graying-america.html^

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About the Author

Ericka Nicolas

Writer & Researcher

Elder Guide LLC

Ericka Nicolas began her career in the banking industry where she learned the importance of being detail-oriented and well-organized, both of which she applies to her current work as a writer and proofreader. With her vast experience in writing, Ericka is able to produce well-researched and engaging content that appeals to Elderguide's target audience. She was able to provide readers with valuable insights on a variety of topics and ensures that all the information she provides is accurate and up-to-date. She takes the time to carefully study each topic given to her, which allows her to produce truly informative articles. Ericka's passion for writing and her dedication to producing quality content gave way to her goal of helping our readers navigate the complex world of senior living and make informed decisions about their future. Aside from her work at Elderguide, Ericka enjoys spending time with her newly-married husband and their dog, Yari. She loves cooking, traveling, and exploring new restaurants in her spare time.