Activities of Daily Living
Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) are the fundamental tasks that healthy people typically perform on a daily basis without assistance. These activities serve as a measure of a person's functional independence and ability to care for themselves. ADLs are important in the healthcare field as they provide valuable insights into an individual's overall health and well-being.
When individuals face challenges in performing ADLs independently, they may require caregiver support or the use of mechanical devices to assist them. Medical professionals often assess a person's ADL abilities to develop personalized care plans and make informed decisions regarding the appropriate level of care, such as hospitalization, long-term care, or alternative housing options.
The six basic ADLs encompass the following basic self-care tasks:
1. Mobility/Ambulating: Standing, sitting, walking, and moving independently. Getting in and out of bed, moving around the home, and using stairs.
2. Eating: Feeding oneself without assistance. Using utensils, bringing food to the mouth, chewing and swallowing.
3. Dressing, Grooming & Personal Appearance: Selecting clothing, dressing and undressing, and maintaining personal grooming habits like brushing hair and teeth.
4. Continence: Maintaining control over bladder & bowel function.
5. Toileting: Safely getting to and from the toilet and independently maintaining personal hygiene.
6. Bathing & Personal Hygiene: Showering, bathing, and practicing personal hygiene.
These basic ADLs are essential for individuals to live independently and maintain a good quality of life. By assessing a person's proficiency in performing these activities, healthcare professionals can determine the appropriate support and care required to meet their unique needs.
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living
What are Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs)?
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) are complex skills that assess a person's ability to live independently and manage their daily lives. Unlike basic ADLs, which focus on personal care, IADLs involve tasks such as grocery shopping, meal planning, and managing finances. These activities determine the level of support needed and the ability to live independently. Declining IADLs may indicate underlying health issues. IADLs are often categorized into 8 areas:
8 Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs)
1. Communication: Effectively interact and convey thoughts, ideas, and needs through verbal and non-verbal means, ensuring clear understanding and meaningful engagement with others.
2. Financial Management: Handling personal finances and managing money-related tasks, such as budgeting, paying bills, keeping track of expenses, and making informed financial decisions.
3. Meal Preparation: Planning, preparing, and cooking meals according to dietary needs and preferences. Grocery shopping, meal planning, following recipes, and ensuring proper nutrition.
4. Medication Management: Manage medication schedules, dosage instructions, and proper administration. Organizing medications, adhering to prescribed regimens, and understanding potential side effects.
5. Laundry: Laundry tasks, including sorting, washing, drying, folding, and storing clothes and other fabrics appropriately.
6. Shopping: Independently navigate shopping environments, identify needed items, compare prices, make informed purchasing decisions, and manage shopping lists.
7. Transportation: Arrange and utilize transportation for various purposes, such as attending appointments, running errands, and participating in social activities. It may involve driving, using public transportation, or coordinating rides with others.
8. Housekeeping: Maintain a clean and organized living environment. Cleaning, tidying up, dusting, vacuuming, and managing household chores.
Evaluating an individual's proficiency in these instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) helps healthcare professionals to determine the level of assistance required for independent living.