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At some point in their lives, older adults may realize that they can no longer provide the standard of care they need to remain independent on their own; therefore, they turn to senior living. Yet with so many options available today, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and not know where to begin. While all the different options seek to improve the lives of seniors, some may be more of a natural fit for the individual’s needs.
Ultimately, choosing this right fit comes down to the level of care needed. Assisted living communities are an appropriate middle ground for those who value autonomy, but may need help managing their medical and personal care needs. They are vibrant communities with many opportunities to lead a satisfying life of entertainment, social outings, and more.
When looking for assisted living near you, Caring Advisor wants to help you make an informed decision so that the transition between care levels is seamless and stress-free. If you have any questions about what high-quality senior care is right for you or your loved one, do not hesitate to get in touch with our representatives.
Assisted living is a type of care facility that balances specialized services with older individuals’ desire to remain as independent as possible. It is meant for people who cannot live on their own, but do not require medical attention 24/7. Medical care and skilled nursing are offered, but they are not the sole intent of the facility.
While each assisted living community is different, all communities maintain the same general aim: to help their residents enjoy their lives, free from some of the burdens and challenges of daily life. Additionally, this type of facility also offers a range of wellness opportunities to cater to the whole person—both physical and mental— during their stay.
Individuals entering assisted living facilities often need assistance with activities of daily living, or ADLs for short. These include, but are not limited to:
Varying levels of assistance with medication and health care can be offered but may depend on state regulation.
Typically, everyday community life is overseen by trained caregivers and physicians that have pre-determined the type of assistance that an individual needs. They create a service plan that details the care the senior will receive on an ongoing basis, which is also regularly updated to meet that person’s evolving needs.
Assisted living centers are open to many adults over a certain age based on their care level requirements. For example, those who suffer from moderate to severe cognitive impairment—usually associated with Alzheimer’s disease—might require assisted living services. This can be assessed by their primary care provider who performs an extensive medical history and physical.
Individuals may enter assisted living facilities from a less formal residential care facility, such as an independent living or retirement community, but they can also come from another skilled nursing facility, rehabilitation center, or hospital.
Assisted living communities also provide a unique type of elder care for those who need care on a temporary or short-term basis, but cannot return to their previous living situation.
Ultimately, we recommend you look for senior living communities that offer the full spectrum of senior care options. Residents of assisted living, in particular, can expect the facilities to be well-kept with personal care services designed to engage them and help them stay healthy.
These types of communities provide ample amenities and activities that encourage overall wellness for residents, including:
Some communities have special facilities for health and exercise programs, while others offer common areas for dining, entertainment, and activities for residents and guests. They bustle with activity and nurture a community-oriented atmosphere.
Assisted living and nursing homes are two different options in the healthcare spectrum to support the continuation of care during the natural aging process. While these terms are often confused or used interchangeably, they are not the same type of senior care. Instead, the primary difference between the two is the level of care provided. For example, in comparison to assisted living, nursing homes offer a higher level of care because residents typically need 24/7 nursing care or monitoring. In fact, they are considered one of the highest levels of care outside of a hospital.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, residents of assisted living facilities are generally less impaired, have better-perceived health, and lower prevalence of chronic diseases than those in nursing home facilities.
Overall, due to the high acuity care in nursing homes, they are more care-focused— but that does not mean that both options do not cater to the emotional wellbeing of senior residents. Over recent decades, there has been a greater effort to change the perceptions surrounding nursing homes and a push for a more holistic approach to healing.
The cost of living in one of these types of communities will vary based on the living arrangements, floorplans, location, and services provided. However, prospective applicants often discover that assisted living is less expensive when compared to options such as private home health care and more. In most communities, there are different pricing models and rates that may be charged on a month-to-month basis or as part of a longer-term contract.
Financial assistance is available depending on different variables including the state where you live, economic situation, whether or not you are low income, veteran status, and more. Some financing may be available from government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid.
If you are looking for ways to cover assisted living, consider these options:
Along with the above options, some private insurance providers offer long-term care insurance depending on your policy. Please contact your insurance policy provider directly to inquire about coverage.
In the past, your choices were limited. Nowadays, people have the opportunity to choose between a large variety of senior care options like independent living, memory care facility, continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), skilled nursing facilities, and more.
If you have determined that assisted living is right for you or your loved one, Caring Advisor wants to help cut through the clutter. We are available for all of your questions as you search for assisted living near you. Contact Caring Advisor to learn more about the many different communities and care options we offer.