Senior Living Choices

Decisions regarding senior living options can be overwhelming for seniors and their families. There are stages in everyone’s lives when living situations must be considered. The earlier you and your loved ones discuss these choices, and how needs change over time, the less stress you will have. The following article can help you plan and make informed decisions so that these choices will be less overwhelming.

Living choices depend upon the health and well-being of the individual. These choices are usually in one of three categories: Independent living, Assisted living, and Nursing Care. For healthy seniors enjoying retirement, they are living independently. Independent living does not mean that you cannot have the assistance of others. It just means you do not depend on it. Many seniors living in their own homes, or in a retirement community, choose to use home care. There are many reasons for this, from companionship to help with cooking, cleaning, and running errands. This assistance provides the extra time to enjoy retirement life. As you age, your health and well-being changes. Consider your choices.

As age related health conditions develop loved ones may be concerned for your health and safety. Often seniors will be in denial that they need help. If there is a diagnosis of a disability or condition that limits their ability to care for themselves, assisted living should be considered. Conditions such as heart problems, Alzheimer’s disease, and a host of other age related disorders warrant this level of help. For those who want to remain in their own home, assisted living can be provided through a homecare agency. Homecare can provide help with daily living activities, from household chores to personal care assistance such as bathing, dressing, medication management, and mobility assistance. Many Independent living communities have an assisted living offering. Assisted living facilities may be a good choice if the senior cannot remain at home, yet does not need skilled nursing care. There are many choices available for your health, safety, and peace of mind.

If needs become such that skilled nursing care is required, a nursing home may be the best option. Nursing homes provide intensive, long-term medical care to seniors with serious health conditions in a fully staffed and monitored environment. This may be the best option if family lives a distance away. Many seniors, even with high needs and disabilities can stay at home with a combination of homecare Aids, home healthcare nursing visits, and family support. Determining your best option is the goal.

Different stages of life will cause you to confront different needs and options. We recommend discussing your needs and desires with family, those close to you, your doctor, and a Geriatric Care Manager. Whatever your hopes and desires are for your senior years, there are many choices. Aging in place, in the comfort and safety of home is now a feasible option for most. Whatever your stage of life, it is good to know you have choices.

For here for a PDF of Senior Living Choices chart.