According to the latest census, over three million children in America had a disability in 2019, a much higher rate than in 2008. This makes up 4% of the under-18 population in the United States. Behind those three million children are even more family members, caregivers, and loved ones who care for them.

Over time, this level of care can take its toll on any parent or caregiver.

What effect can long-term caregiving have?

In order to care for their child, many parents will choose to work fewer hours or quit their job entirely. This decision, while done with the best intentions, often results in a less than ideal situation. 

Money problems, loss of health benefits, and inadequate home care training are just a few issues parents may encounter when giving up their job. It’s important to understand the different options available and how they can benefit you before making a decision.

What’s more, for larger families with more than one child, balancing the needs of disabled children and their siblings can become difficult. There is only so much that one or two parents can do, and there’s no shame in needing some extra support to make sure everyone in the family, both adults and children, get the support they need.

What alternatives are there to help parents care for disabled children?

Respite care for children with special needs is a type of temporary at-home care in which a certified personal care assistant provides in-home, supportive services. The purpose of respite care for special needs children is to give parents a break, allowing them to tend to the needs of their other children, partners, other family and friends, and of course, themselves. 

Here are some ways that respite care for children can benefit you, as a parent:

  • Allow you to continue to work, generate income, and keep health benefits
  • Provide time to run errands, meet with friends, or take care of other activities outside the home
  • Care schedules can be tailored to fit your specific needs
  • Gives you the opportunity to take time for yourself and for other family members

As a parent of a child with physical, developmental, learning, or mental disabilities or delays, it’s important to consider all options before making decisions regarding the home care of your son or daughter. Respite care for children with disabilities can not just make life easier for you, it can improve the quality of life for your child as well.

How to get respite care for children?

There are various forms of respite care for children with special needs. They can be provided through both traditional and non-traditional means. Traditional respite care for children often comes through:

  • Overnight or hourly stays in the home of a family or friend
  • Overnight and hourly stays in a foster home
  • Services occurring in the child’s or provider’s home

Examples of non-traditional respite care services include:

  • Overnight and day camps
  • Music lessons
  • Lessons
  • Sports
  • Transportation to respite care activities
  • Youth and family fitness center memberships

All of these services and more can offer a welcome helping hand to families that need the support. 

At Best Care, we help parents make respite care decisions every day. Our team of experienced home care professionals is ready to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn how our respite care services can help you and your family: (651) 330-2550.