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What is overnight care?

Where do you need care?

We can provide care in your home anywhere in England & Wales

Overnight care is when a carer stays with you during the night to assist you with any health or care needs that you may have. This type of care is specifically for those that have additional needs overnight, require 24-hour care or become more anxious during the early hours by themselves. A carer will help with any support needs that would otherwise occur during the day, such as assisting with personal care, administering medication, helping you to and from the toilet and ensuring you have a safe night’s sleep.

Care during the night is suitable for anyone in need of extra support overnight – whether they have a spinal injury and need help turning safely in bed, or if they have dementia and regularly wake throughout the night. We’ll ensure we put the right level of support in place for you, so that you and your loved ones have peace of mind that you’re being looked after no matter the hour.

Overnight care can be delivered in one of three ways:

  1. Sleeping night – when a carer sleeps in your home through the night but is on hand if you need support.
  2. Waking night – when a carer stays awake for the night and provides specialist care whenever you require.
  3. Sitting service – when a carer stays awake and covers for a regular carer who provides your care full-time.
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What's the difference between a waking night and a sleeping night?

A waking night is when a carer stays awake for the entire night to assist you, whereas a sleeping night is when a carer will sleep in your home for the night but still be on hand should you need support.

Overnight careWaking nights tend to be arranged for those who have more complex needs, such as advanced dementia, clinical nursing care, recovery after an operation or those receiving palliative care. You may only need one carer, for example, if you have Alzheimer’s and become confused as to whether it’s day or night and need help with personal care, or if you have more complex needs, you may need two carers who will help you with any assisted transfers to and from your bed.

Care for waking nights may also be suitable for you if you don’t have the room for a live-in carer or sleeping nights carer who will sleep in your home but require support throughout the night. It allows you to have expert, one-to-one support that is completely tailored to you and delivered to you in the comfort of your own home. This may be particularly important for those receiving palliative or end-of-life care and require round-the-clock care and want to spend their last moments at home surrounded by their loved ones.

Sleeping nights are slightly different than waking nights, as your carer will sleep in your home in a separate room rather than stay awake for the entire night. Of course, they’ll be on hand should you need them throughout the night for anything, but for regular bouts of support throughout the night, waking nights may be more suitable for you. Sleeping nights are usually part of a live-in care package, when a carer lives with you full-time in your home to provide care during the day and evening but need little or no support during the night. Alternatively, sleeping nights may be suitable if you don’t necessarily need physical care, but tend to become more anxious during the early hours or worry if you wake and there is no one there. Having someone on hand that you can call upon should you need them can provide you with comfort and reassurance at the time when you need it most.


What to expect from an overnight carer

For waking nights or sitting care, your overnight carer will generally arrive in the evening at around 9pm and stay for approximately 10 hours; but a specific time will be agreed beforehand with you and your local care manager. There may be a slight overlap with another carer if you receive care throughout the day or if a Helping Hands carer is taking over from your regular caregiver whilst they take a break. They will then be there until the morning, again at a prearranged time with your local care manager, which will all be discussed and confirmed at your initial meeting.

For sleeping nights, your carer will more than likely already be living with you in your home as a live-in carer, so you won’t have to arrange a time for your carer to arrive like you would for a waking nights carer. Your live-in carer may help you get ready for bed, assist you with taking any evening doses of medication and support you to get safely into bed, getting themselves into their own bed once you have everything you need. They will be available throughout the night should you need anything, but generally they will then continue to provide your care again in the morning – helping you to get up, dressed and have breakfast.

Whether you have care for waking nights or sleeping nights, all of our carers are chosen for their professionalism, empathy and compassion – which is why we pride ourselves on having some of the best carers in the industry. All of our carers receive in-house training from our instructors, covering modules such as safeguarding, personal care, dementia, first aid and medication.

Any carer that supports someone with complex care needs will also receive additional training from our regional nurse team, who have many years’ experience in delivering and overseeing clinical care. This specialist clinical training will cover the specific needs that you have – anything from PEG feeding, continence care, stoma care or tracheostomies.


Why choose overnight care?

Care needs can be unpredictable and often occur when we least expect it, but most importantly, they are not time sensitive. Care may be required at any time, day or night, which is why it’s important to consider your overnight support if you’re living with a long-term health condition or have complex care needs.

Night time careWith overnight care from Helping Hands, you have the constant reassurance that there is someone there to provide you with support. And our carers don’t just support you with the physical elements of care; they’re there to be a source of companionship and friendship at a time when perhaps you feel most vulnerable or anxious. Things can seem more difficult at night and it’s a time when we typically turn things over in our minds, dwelling on what’s happened and what will happen in the future. That’s why our carers will be there during the early hours to help ease any worries and be there as someone to talk to, easing you back into a restful night’s sleep.

Overnight care is particularly suitable for those with complex heath conditions, as these usually require some care input during the night, such as administering medication, safely turning in bed or support with toileting.

If you’d like to find out more about overnight care in your area or would like to discuss your situation in detail, call us today. Our customer care specialists will be there to listen to you and help you to find a solution that works for you.

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