Whether you’re searching for a care home for yourself or for a loved one, ensuring that you get it right first time is a must. However, with thousands of care homes across the country all claiming to provide the best care, how do you really know which one will suit you best? Whether you’re looking
for care homes in London or in the countryside, there are a few things you have to consider when it comes to choosing a care home, and we’ve listed them to get you started.
Your First Impression When You Visit
The saying goes ‘you should never judge a book by its cover’, but when it comes to choosing your care home, your first impression could be everything. Researching online, you’ll often find similar information across every website. Websites are designed to sell the facilities to you, so wait until you arrive for the first look around to make any judgements. Upon arrival you’ll know fairly quickly whether or not you or your loved one is likely to feel comfortable. Were you welcomed by the staff and other residents? How well-kept does the building look in general? Could you see you or your loved one being cared for here? First impressions do matter, and it’s important to pay attention to your instinct.
The Social Scene
You may not consider the social aspect of a care home to be overly important when care is a priority, but loneliness is an issue not to be ignored within residential care. Take a look at the activities on offer – Is there something that you or your loved one would be interested in? Is there a comfortable communal area for casual socialising during the day? How easy is it to access? How much choice will residents have when it comes to participating or skipping activities? Take into account your or your loved one’s needs. After all, some may benefit more from a quieter, smaller home than a larger one.
What Do The Current Residents Think?
No one will know the care home better than its current residents, so when visiting, make sure you speak to them! Not only will you get a much better insight into life within the care home, you’ll also be providing current residents with company so it truly is a win-win situation. Find out if they enjoy it there, what they get up to during the day or in the evenings, are there outings and what it’s like to participate – these will all prove beneficial when it comes to choosing. After all, hearing from those currently in the position you will be in soon will help you gain an important perspective.
How Much Independence Is There?
While moving into a care home generally means that you or your loved one needs care, there should still be a level of independence available for residents who want it. It is possible to decide on your own routine, or is it set from the start? Can you personalise your room? Care homes that allow personalization and choice in routine are more likely to promote independence where possible. It’s incredible how much difference it can make to a resident if they have access to their own bedding, pictures, furnishings and keepsakes and for this reason, personalisation is a must.
While there are plenty of questions to ask yourself before choosing a care home for you or your loved one, the four above are a great place to start.
Comfort is just as important as good care and certainly shouldn’t be overlooked. A care home that doesn’t care for your comfort is one to be