ADLs and IADLs and Why They Matter

September 25th, 2012

In your research for in-home care, you are likely to hear some unfamiliar terms. When assessing your care needs or those of your loved ones, terms like ADLs and IADLs will come up frequently. So just what do those terms mean and why do they matter?

ADL stands for “Activities of Daily Living”. A person’s Activities of Daily Living include the everyday personal care activities that are fundamental to caring for oneself and maintaining independence, such as bathing, grooming, dressing, toileting, eating, etc.

IADL stands for “Instrumental Activities of Daily Living”. These are activities related to independent living and are valuable for evaluating persons with early-stage disease, both to assess the level of disease and to determine the person’s ability to care for himself or herself. IADLs include activities like housework, medication management, money management, using the telephone, transportation, etc.

Assessing a person’s ADLs and IADLs is one of the first steps when developing an in-home care plan or determining an appropriate referral for care. A person’s ADL and IADL assistance levels will help establish the amount and type of care that is most suitable for that person.

If you or a loved one needs an in-home assessment of ADLs or IADLs, contact Visiting Angels in Alameda County at (510) 284-0000 or in Santa Clara County at (408) 735-0977 to schedule your assessment today.

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