There reaches a point in everyone’s lives where important decisions must be made to accommodate the inevitability of getting older. Sometimes these decisions are made for yourself. Other times they are made on behalf of a loved one. As a person grows older or suffers from disabilities, the option of assisted living becomes a reality. Assisted living scenarios frequently apply to senior citizens when they reach a point wherein they need full-time, daily assistance.
If you are considering assisted living for you or a loved one, read on for more information and tips to help you make the best decisions about assisted living. The common denominator between retirement communities, nursing homes and assisted living facilities are the senior citizens who reside in them. However, the differences between retirement communities, nursing homes, and assisted living are very significant.
Although different, retirement communities, nursing homes and assisted living facilities all provide different levels of care for people with varied levels of independence and functionality.
Retirement communities are designed for high functioning, 55+ independent residents. 24/7 medical or daily assistance care services are not provided, although some do provide transitional housing into assisted living or nursing home facilities. Recreation centers, golf courses, shopping centers and dining halls are all oftentimes central to retirement communities.
Nursing homes offer full-time care for residents. Nursing home residents typically have more permanent, serious medical conditions, such respiratory care requirements that necessitate full time attention and round the clock care. Highly trained nurses, physical therapists and even speech therapists are usually on staff at nursing homes.
Residents of nursing homes are typically not able to live independently without the care of nurses and medical professionals. The benefit of nursing homes, opposed to a hospital, is the comfort of living in a residential-like space, with personalized care.
Assisted living, on the other hand, can cater to people who are still able to be semi-independent, but also in need of higher-than-average medical and daily care. Residents in assisted living facilities can expect as close to normal living experiences as possible. Staff is available 24/7, even though you may not need their assistance every hour of the day. Group activities, pharmacies and physical fitness/therapy are also included in most assisted living programs.