After a lifetime of working and caring for others, your senior loved one deserves the physical and mental well-being of a happy retirement. Assisted living communities offer social interaction, a full and productive lifestyle, safety, and just the right support for seniors who are largely independent but may need some daily care. There are a myriad of amenities in many communities, including beauty services, gourmet dining and fitness centers. Through these services as well as social activities, many seniors are finding that today’s assisted living communities provide convenience, happiness and improved quality of life.
Consider these seven benefits of assisted living communities to understand how a move to assisted living could help your aging relative enjoy happiness and health.
After retirement, seniors may be overwhelmed by free time. These extra hours can be used to pursue passions or pick up new hobbies. One of the top benefits of assisted living is a number of activities that appeal to all walks of life. Consider these pursuits:
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One of the key assisted living benefits is help with activities of daily living (ADLs). This can mean anything from occasional assistance getting dressed to daily help bathing.
If an adult is independent when they move in but needs more care as they age, that assistance is available on-site and can be quickly arranged. Health-related benefits of assisted living communities include:
Mental stimulation may lower the risk of dementia and long-term cognitive decline. Opportunities for lifelong learning are among the many benefits of assisted living facilities. From lending libraries and language lessons to woodworking shops, there are plenty of opportunities for seniors to stay engaged. Communities offer:
Keeping seniors healthy and safe stands out as one of the main assisted living benefits that spurs caregivers to seek a new home for their loved one. Safety-related advantages of assisted living facilities include:
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Seniors living alone may be more vulnerable to security risks. Some increased security features assisted living communities provide include:
Elderly adults have unique nutrition needs, which can be quite a challenge to meet for seniors living at home. The task of preparing healthy, balanced meals may be the responsibility of family members, meal delivery services, or seniors themselves. Here’s what residents can typically expect in assisted living communities:
A lack of exercise can lead to physical and mental decline. Keeping seniors active can benefit muscle and bone health and reduce the likelihood of falls. Physical activity keeps aging adults healthy longer, improves cognitive function, and is a great social outlet. Some physical benefits of assisted living include:
Assisted living is a great choice for many seniors looking for a relaxing, engaged retirement. However, it may not be the best care type for your loved one, depending on their individual care needs and interests.
Pro: Assisted living communities offer activities and classes adapted for seniors with almost all physical skill levels.
Con: Assisted living communities may not be able to support people with moderate to severe dementia. Memory care communities will have activities tailored to seniors with cognitive decline.
Pro: Assisted living residents have meals and snacks readily available in restaurant-style dining rooms.
Con: If your loved one loves to cook or is set on having a full kitchen, most assisted living communities only offer in-room mini fridges and microwaves for safety reasons.
Pro: Assisted living communities support seniors’ independence as much as possible by offering low-threshold doors, grab bars, and shower benches to reduce falls, as well as wheelchair-accessible hallways and amenity spaces.
Con: If your loved one is unable to eat independently or to transfer independently from their bed to their wheelchair, they may not qualify for assisted living admission. A personal home health aide or nursing home may be a better fit.
Pro: Most assisted living communities can help with medication management by reminding residents when to take their medicine throughout the day or by picking up prescriptions from a local pharmacy.
Con: Most assisted living aides and nurses aren’t legally allowed to help with more medical procedures, like insulin injection, wound care, or dialysis hookup. If your loved one needs assistance with these conditions but would like to stay in an assisted living community, they may have to hire an additional home health aide.
Pro: Assisted living communities offer assistance with ADLs like dressing and bathing.
Con: Some assisted living communities require residents to need help with a certain number of ADLs for admission. If your loved one is still able to fulfill all daily tasks, an independent living community may be a better fit.
If you think your family member could benefit from assisted living, reach out to one of A Place for Mom’s free Senior Living Advisors. They can help you understand the different care types and determine which type of community near you is the best fit for your loved one. Chat about your relative’s favorite hobbies and interests as well as their health needs for a personalized consultation.
The information contained on this page is for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical, legal or financial advice or create a professional relationship between A Place for Mom and the reader. Always seek the advice of your health care provider, attorney or financial advisor with respect to any particular matter, and do not act or refrain from acting on the basis of anything you have read on this site. Links to third-party websites are only for the convenience of the reader; A Place for Mom does not endorse the contents of the third-party sites.
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