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Often times, a care community like The Woodleigh is seen as an all-or-nothing commitment. That belief can leave many people searching for a solution they believe doesn’t exist: a short-term care option for a loved one. This belief, however, is unfounded. Many communities, like our own in Baton Rouge, LA, offer short-term rehab as a care option. There are many situations in which this type of focused, short-term care is the ideal scenario to get your loved one the help they need for the time they need it.

1. Surgical Recovery

Recovering from surgery is a tall order for anyone, young or old. The challenges inherent in recovery become greater as we age. For many seniors and their families, this presents unforeseen difficulties. For example, a senior may be happy and healthy living on their own. However, following open heart surgery, they require assistance to properly recuperate. Due to their former—and future—independence, their loved ones may be unprepared to take on their heightened care needs. This is where a short-term rehab facility comes in. A well-trained team of care providers provides care until your loved one can return to their regular activities.

2. Injury Recovery  

Injury recovery presents the same challenges as surgical recovery, escalating care needs and creating scenarios a family may not be prepared for. Often times, these challenges are even harder to address than those of surgical recovery. Whereas surgeries are typically scheduled ahead of time, an injury, such as from a fall, is always sudden and unexpected. One of the benefits of short-term rehab is the personalized care your loved one receives. With trained medical staff on hand and options such as physical therapy, your loved one can regain their health and confidence before returning home.

3. Rehabilitation

This brings us to another scenario where a short-term stay at a care community may be required: rehabilitation. Perhaps, your loved one has recently undergone a hip or knee replacement. Rather than a need only for medical care, your loved one will also require comprehensive physical therapy and rehabilitation. Following these surgeries, the risk of reinjury is often high. While patients tend to take it easy post-surgery, fulfilling “must-do” responsibilities like cooking and cleaning still puts them at risk. Frequent trips to and from physical therapy appointments can put a strain on family support networks. A short-term rehab facility can provide the physical therapy needed and serve as a safe environment for recovery while the patient works to regain mobility. With proper care, patients can exceed their capabilities pre-surgery.

4. Wound Care

Wound care can prove to be one the biggest challenges for family members providing care and support for their loved ones. Wounds are often hard to reach, and the risk of infection can be high. The pain that is often inherent can cause inexperienced family care providers to shy away from providing needed medical attention. For certain injuries, such as hardened and constricted blood vessels that afflict elder diabetic patients, the penalty for improper care can be a worsening of the injury or the onset of additional complications. The staff at a short-term rehab facility possess the skills and expertise to avoid these pitfalls and help your loved one recover with the least amount of pain and discomfort possible.

5. Home Repairs

We’ve discussed many situations that may affect older loved ones. However, what if it’s not a change in your loved one but in their environment that’s presenting a challenge? Take, for instance, home repairs. As independent elders age in the homes they’ve owned for decades, these homes often require “senior care” of their own. Sometimes these repairs come as a preparation to sell the home, and other times they’re simply necessary for continued residence. Whatever the cause or need, the reality is the same: a disruption to the normal routine of the house, added stress for the elderly resident, and new hazards, such as items to trip over or dust to trigger an asthma attack. A short-term rehab facility provides a safe place to wait out the repairs where your loved one will be properly cared for.

6. Inclement Weather

Harsh weather can present many of the same challenges as home repairs, as a senior’s environment takes on new degrees of difficulty and danger for a limited period of time. The demands of keeping up with snow and ice often prove to be too much. The heat of the summer in many areas is intolerable without adequate air conditioning. Without the ability to navigate inclement weather, routine tasks such as grocery shopping become a challenge. These challenges have the added effect of causing mental stress to elderly residents, along with their loved ones. A stay in short-term rehab can provide a comfortable place to ride out the weather for seniors who aren’t ready to make the move to a care community full-time.

7. Trial Stay

We’ve talked about a number of scenarios where long-term care is not yet needed. But, what do you do if you’re still not sure? For many loved ones and their families, this is a particularly big decision. The jump to long-term care can seem daunting and not knowing whether it’s required or what it will be like only add to the challenge. A stay in short-term rehab can shed light on the situation and help answer all of those questions. Your loved one might find life in the community to be more relaxing and enjoyable. Nonetheless, it can provide concrete answers where before there were only “what ifs?”.

Regardless of why you are looking into a short-term rehab facility, the goal is always the same at The Woodleigh of Baton Rouge: we strive for residents to rapidly regain health, mobility, and confidence. Please reach out with any questions by giving us a call at 225-307-3279.

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