Understanding Different Advance Directives

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An advance directive is an important way for seniors (or anyone, for that matter) to retain control of their medical care in the event they’re unable to make decisions. Advance directives can be used to indicate who should make decisions and what interventions should be taken if seniors are unable to make decisions on their own. There are many types of advance directives. While they vary by state, the following are the most common directives you and your aging loved one may want to consider. 

Living Will

A living will is a document that allows seniors to specify the type of medical care they want to receive if they’re incapacitated or unable to make decisions. A living will may be used to make clear your loved one’s wishes for pain relief, CPR, feeding tubes, IV hydration, antibiotics, and life support. 

Planning for your loved one’s future should also include considerations about his or her ability to continue aging in place. Living alone at home in the golden years can present a few unique challenges. Trust Dallas home care professionals to help your senior loved one maintain a higher quality of life while he or she manages an illness and performs the daily tasks of living. 

Health Care Proxy

This important document allows seniors to designate someone who will make healthcare decisions on their behalf if they’re incapable of making decisions or making their wishes known. The healthcare proxy your loved one designates will have the right to refuse, request, and approve treatments. 

Durable Power of Attorney

This advance directive allows seniors to designate someone as having the power of attorney if they’re incapacitated. The designated individual will have the right to make bank transactions, sign checks, write checks, apply for disability, and more while your loved one is incapacitated. Your loved one may also execute a DPOA to designate different people to handle specific tasks. One person may be designated the medical power of attorney while another can be designated the legal power of attorney. 

It’s especially important for seniors to have advance directives if they’re living with serious illnesses such as Alzheimer’s or another form of age-related dementia. Aging in place can present a few challenges for seniors living with dementia. However, they can still live independently at home with the help of professional dementia care. Dallas families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide their elderly loved ones with mental and social stimulation, timely medication reminders, assistance with meal prep, and much more. Our caregivers are available around the clock to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life.

Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Order

A DNR order alerts medical professionals that an individual doesn’t want to receive CPR. If your loved one has a DNR order, he or she may need to supplement it with other directives if he or she doesn’t want life-prolonging treatment. A DNR order can be added to a medical record for someone who is already hospitalized. 

It’s also essential to determine your loved one’s preferences for continuing to live at home or moving to an assisted living facility as he or she gets older. Many seniors prefer aging in place over moving to assisted living facilities. If your senior loved one needs assistance to remain safe and comfortable while living at home, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading Dallas senior care agency. Our dedicated in-home caregivers can assist with meal prep, bathing and grooming, exercise, medication reminders, and many other important tasks. Whether your parent needs hourly or live-in care, give us a call at (214) 363-3400 today. 


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