Caregiving is Hard

Jennifer McLeod

Caregiving is hard. Technology can help.

Every caregiver we’ve ever interviewed has agreed that caregiving can be hard. In fact, it’s often difficult and the logistics of balancing another person’s well-being with your own is an ongoing challenge.

There are common themes among caregiver stories - general worry about safety, privacy, awareness, and quality of life. These worries became the “why” of HomeEXCEPT; alleviating them is our REASON for being.

We built our monitoring system to increase caregiver peace of mind and senior quality of life while never infringing on privacy. We aim to improve the lives of seniors who choose to age in place and their carers.

Many Needs. One versatile solution.

The caregiving journey isn’t the same for everyone. Despite most having similar emotional difficulties, needs vary drastically from one situation to another.

Caregivers who live with their older loved one have different needs than those who live across town or in a different state or province. Adult children who coordinate care with siblings or with professional home care providers have needs that are different still.

Some older adults have high needs and others require only a little assistance. And those who need less help today may need more a month from now.

Every situation is unique and for any solution to be truly useful, it must be able to adapt and evolve.

Consider the following journey:

January - John is starting to worry about Mom. She’s not eating regularly and seems to be extra tired. He wonders if she’s skipping meals and sleeping enough.

February - John decides to purchase a HomeEXCEPT monitoring system to help ease his mind by understanding more about his Mom’s activity day to day. He installs sensors on her bed, fridge, medication drawer, favourite chair, and main bathroom. This gives him a good overall sense of sleeping, eating, medication compliance, and toileting routines, and of general movement throughout the house.

March - John now knows that kitchen activity isn’t regular and decides on a plan to help. He adds his Mom’s good friend on the monitoring system as a guest. She lives nearby and agrees to check in on days when the fridge doesn’t open by lunch time.

April - Mom was visiting a nearby shopping mall and had a bad fall resulting in her having to use a walker for a minimum of 6 weeks. Both John and her neighbour notice that there is significantly less movement throughout her home and they suspect that she isn’t using her walker as recommended. John orders an additional sensor for their system so they can ensure she’s using the walker to move around safely.

HomeEXCEPT adjusts as your needs change.

In the above example, John had specific concerns about his Mom. He set up his monitoring system to suit his needs and expanded the system with another sensor when he needed it.

HomeEXCEPT allows for unlimited guests so caregivers can broaden their circle of care and share responsibility with family, friends, or professionals. There are many different configurations for set up and sensors can be assigned to the objects in the home that are most helpful in each situation.

It’s true, caregiving isn’t one-size-fits-all, but sensor monitoring can be tailored to suit your circumstance - and easily adjusted if things change.