When looking into Boston area home care you will be questioned and asked about ADLs and IADLs.  Theses are two groups of tasks the determine how independent someone can like by themselves.  To understand if a senior would benefit from home care, case managers first must determine the needs of a possible patient.

Some patients may need more care than what home health aides can provide and a skilled nursing home might be a more appropriate solution for them.

What You Will Learn:

  • Definitions of ADLs and IADLs
  • What tasks they consist of
  • Who can assess a patient

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)

Activities of daily living are self-care tasks that are akin to skills people learn in early childhood.  They Include:

  • Feeding
  • Toileting
  • Dressing
  • Selecting Attire
  • Grooming
  • Maintaining Continence
  • Bathing
  • Walking and Transferring (moving from bed to wheelchair)

ADLs are often mentioned in connection with IADLs (Instrumental Activities of Daily Living).  This skill set involved more complex tasks.  If a patient has issues with ADLs, most likely they will not be capable of handling IADLs.

What Are Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs)?

While ADLs are skills needed for self-care, IADLs are skills that someone needs to successfully live on their own.  These skills are usually learned during teenage years, and include:

  • Managing Finances
  • Handling Transportation (driving or navigating public transit)
  • Shopping
  • Preparing Meals
  • Telephone Use
  • Managing Medications
  • Housework & Basic Home Maintenance

Who Can Assess Seniors

Both ADLs and IADLs represent various skills sets that people need to manage and living their lives on their own as independent adults.  Doctors, GCMs, rehabilitation specialists, and home care companies assess ADLs and IADLs as part of a senior’s functional assessment.  Difficulty managing ADLs and IADLs can mean looking into at home help, like home care.

Additionally, you as the family caregivers can make these assessments yourself.  You will also be able to see on a day-to-day basis what your parents struggle with and what they do not.

Providing that information to a home care company will be able to allow them to place the right aid for your parent so you have the peace of mind knowing they are taken care of.