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Frequently, when we first meet with clients, they express the need to create a plan to protect their aging loved ones. This need usually stems from witnessing their loved ones struggle with navigating activities of daily living.

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You may have heard the term “Elder Services,” but you may be unfamiliar with what exactly an Elder Service is and what it entails.

Typically, there are two types of Elder Services, Activities of Daily Living (“ADLs”) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (“IADLs”). Let us  better inform you about these two types of Elder Services to determine the care your aging loved one needs. 

Want to share with you some of the differences between the two types of elder services.

First, what is the primary difference between the two Elder Services? The term ADLs refers to the basic tasks of everyday life. This includes tasks such as feeding, dressing, bathing, using the toilet, and moving around. IADLs, on the other hand, refers to cognitive tasks, such as balancing a checkbook, driving, using a telephone, or performing daily household tasks.

It is important to be mindful of situations that may suggest your loved one needs additional care. If you notice, for example, that your loved one is having more difficulty walking up and down stairs, if his or her refrigerator is stocked with spoiled food, or you see that your loved one’s house is gradually becoming messier, this may indicate your loved one is having difficulty with their ADLs or IADLs.

If your loved one is struggling with navigating their ADLs or IADLs, it may be time to consider some options to assist him or her. Home care agencies and caregivers can visit your loved one each day to help him or her bathe, get dressed, make food, and perform light housework tasks. Personal caregivers can also take your loved one grocery shopping, doctor’s appointments, and to visit family members. It is important to note, however, that Medicare will only compensate for IADLs, not ADLs.

We know how challenging it can be to prepare for your loved one getting older, especially when he or she is struggling with navigating daily tasks. Enlisting the guidance of an Elder Law attorney is just one of the ways you can create a comprehensive plan to protect your aging loved one. Do not wait to contact our office to ask us your questions and schedule a meeting with one of our experienced Elder Law attorneys.