When you discover that your elder is in need of long-term care – care that’s more thorough and in depth than you can provide – then, chances are, you’re going to seek in home care. And, while in home care is incredibly comprehensive and helps your elder stay at home… it’s also very expensive. So from there you’re likely to turn to the alternative and find senior living communities.
Two of the most commonly asked about are Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Facilities. In this article, we hope to answer all the those common questions, but if you need more, you can always contact us.
Assisted Living Facilities
Assisted living is a leg up from retirement homes, so whereas those independent living communities provide minimal help, assisted living provides minor to moderate care for elders.
The living community is structured similar to apartment homes and seniors can opt for a shared or private room. The residences have nurses on call (or on-campus) and security 24/7. Of course, seniors can leave at their leisure and transportation is even provided.
Transportation is one of many amenities provided. When you find senior living communities like this, seniors are also treated to three (GOOD) meals a day – nutritionally and taste-wise. The staff provide care that includes shaving, bathing, dressing and other activities of daily living (ADLs for short). This also means that the staff will help organize and provide the seniors with their medications which the National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) has determined is one of the primary reasons for elders to choose assisted living. So, if you or your loved one has multiple medications and struggles to refill them at the right time, let alone take them at the right time, then this is a viable option.
Interestingly enough, when people want to find senior living communities, they think “Nursing Homes” but these are reserved for seniors that require intensive 24-hour care; in other words, nursing homes are for seniors that need more care than they would receive in assisted living, retirement homes, or adult family homes.
Nursing homes are secure facilities, which means that people cannot leave regularly – least of all, residents. This isn’t to make it feel like they’re landlocked, but because the people that need this kind of care wouldn’t be safe outside. When you find senior living communities like this, know that they’re secure because the residents who suffer from Alzheimers or Dementia may wander off and it would be a tragedy if they were lost.
However, most nursing homes have secure outdoor areas with gardens and paths so seniors can go outside, but not be unsafe.
Nursing homes provide the most care a person can possibly receive short of being in the hospital. This does not necessarily mean hospice care, but this is care that goes beyond the moderate help of assisted living. It could be elders who suffer from physical disabilities that need someone with them at all times.
Nursing Homes Vs. Assisted Living
When you’re trying to find senior living communities, you need to consider the type of elder care required. Nursing homes are very intensive and should only be for elders that need the maximum amount of care. Assisted living is for seniors that aren’t incapable of living on their own, but need some assistance with the activities of daily living.
When having the talk with your elder, remember this is to enrich their life by taking away stressors. Much of the time, elders can manage on their own, but it hinders their quality of life.