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Live-in Care and 24-Hour Care: Which is the Right Choice for Your Loved One?

It’s difficult to care for a loved one, particularly when you work, live far away, or have children that require care and attention. As your aging parents’ needs and demands increase, it can be harder and harder to help them. You try to schedule regular visits from caregivers and family members to attend to their needs. However, when your loved one suffers a decline in physical or cognitive functions or when a change in circumstances results in one parent now living alone, you may find that you need round-the-clock care.

Moving your elderly parent(s) to an assisted living facility or a retirement home may come to mind, but those are not your only options. Live-in and 24-hour care are solutions that can ensure a caregiver is available to address an older adult’s needs – and provide companionship - day and night in their own home. Companionship is known to improve senior’s moods and stave off loneliness and isolation that can lead to depression. According to WebMD, one in three older adults lacks companionship, with many feeling isolated.

Signs That It’s Time for Constant Care

Signs that indicate a switch to 24/7 care at home include:

  • Increased symptoms of bruising that indicate falls or trips
  • Wetting the bed or other “accidents” due to an inability to make it to the bathroom on their own
  • Greater reliance on assistive equipment 
  • Wandering around and away from the home
  • Increased confusion due to advancing dementia
  • Feeling isolated or overwhelmed caring for themselves alone
  • Needing assistance to drink or eat
  • A recent move from rehabilitation or a hospital visit 
  • Decreased agility or mobility due to a stroke or chronic condition
  • A move by family or friends who provided care

Most seniors want to continue living in their own homes for as long as possible. An AARP study reports that almost 90% of seniors want to stay in their homes as they get older, and 82% prefer to stay put when receiving daily assistance. 24-hour or live-in care can satisfy these preferences while providing you with the assurance that they are safe and sound in the place where they want to live.  

Differences Between Live-in Care and 24-Hour Care

Live-in care and 24-hour care may seem redundant, but the terms of care are different for each. Understanding the variance will help determine the best choice for your loved one’s situation.

    Live-in caregivers stay in the home day and night to perform duties outlined on the care plan. One caregiver could work during the week and another on the weekends. Live-in caregivers are provided an 8-hour break and bed to sleep.

    Pros: With just two scheduled caregivers, you and your loved one may form a stronger bond with your home care providers. Also, the caregivers become more familiar with your family member to understand favorite routines and how to address particular needs and moods. Familiarity is especially beneficial to the elderly diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

    Cons: As the client does not receive direct supervision during the caregiver break, live-in care may not be sufficient for individuals who require care at all times of the day and night to ensure their safety and well-being.

  • 24-HOUR CARE
    Two or more caregivers rotate shifts to ensure someone is always awake and available day and night to help your loved one when needed at any time.

    Pros: An alert and trained caregiver is always available to care for and supervise your loved one. Rotations ensure that caregivers are refreshed and ready to address different situations. Seniors who wander at night can benefit from someone alert to their movements.

    Cons: A higher number of caregivers are scheduled to attend to your loved one; scheduled visits still prevent isolation experienced by many seniors. 24-hour care costs are typically higher than live-in care. 

Should I Hire Live-in Care or 24-Hour Care for My Senior?

Live-In Care is appropriate when individuals:

  • Sleep through the night with minimal assistance
  • Do not require constant attention to prohibit wandering or other potentially dangerous activities

24-Hour Care is suitable for individuals who:

  • Wander or pose a threat to themselves due to physical or mental limitations
  • Are frequently awake during the night or show symptoms of “sundowners syndrome” – when an individual becomes more active or agitated as evening falls

Live-in or 24-hour care can serve as a temporary solution to seniors just recovering from surgery or returning from rehabilitation. It can also allow you or other family members to take a much-needed break or go on vacation with the peace of mind that your aging loved one is safe and secure in the comfort of their own home.

Visiting Angels Newton/Canton homecare services provide a variety of non-medical elder care on an hourly, overnight, respite, and 24-hour care basis. Care plans include a range of services that attend to personal care, housekeeping, personal hygiene, meal preparation, transportation, medication reminders, and more. We also offer a cognitive health program as well as dementia & Alzheimer’s care.

Using information obtained from a physician and family members to get a perspective on the client’s needs, our case managers assess each client’s specific situation to determine the best type of care and care plan. Visiting Angels Newton/Canton can take the confusion out of choosing the right care level and services while making “aging in place” a reality for your loved one.


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About Visiting Angels Newton/Canton

Visiting Angels Newton/Canton senior home care agency provides quality in-home care services to seniors and people with disabilities. Countless families have benefited from our dementia home care, Alzheimer’s care, companion care, respite support, transitional aid, and elder home care services in Wellesley, Natick, Newton, Needham, Brookline, Chestnut Hill, Canton, Westwood, Dedham, Watertown, Stoughton, Roslindale, Norwood, and nearby towns. The services provided by Visiting Angels Newton/Canton will be sure to make a positive impact on your loved one’s happiness and quality of life. Call us today at 617-795-2727 for more information and to schedule a free in-home consultation!


Serving Brookline, Canton, Dedham, Natick, Needham, Newton, Norwood, Stoughton, Watertown, Wellesley and Westwood

Visiting Angels NEWTON/CANTON, MA
29 Crafts St #320
Newton, MA 02458
Phone: 617-795-2727
Fax: 617-244-0260

Serving Brookline, Canton, Dedham, Natick, Needham, Newton, Norwood, Stoughton, Watertown, Wellesley and Westwood

Visiting Angels NEWTON/CANTON, MA
29 Crafts St #320
Newton, MA 02458
Phone: 617-795-2727
Fax: 617-244-0260