Growing old is inevitable and it’s undeniable that senior individuals need a higher degree of care and attention, especially if they’re unable to look after themselves. Once you realize that you or your loved one can’t live independently, you’re faced with the difficulty of selecting the right type of care!
Considering the numerous senior living and care options available, it can be quite a task to pick one. Terminologies for senior living and the type of care offered by each vary greatly. There’s also substantial cost involved, so it becomes necessary to understand what you’re getting and ensure that it suits your needs.
Don’t let the process of finding the right option be stressful for you! Here are 7 types of senior living and care options explained in detail, along with the benefits they offer.
1. Home Care
Living in the comfort of their own home for as long as possible, is a priority for many seniors. Nonetheless, this isn’t always possible given the natural aging process and any critical illnesses that may be affecting them. With any home care agency seniors can continue to stay at their residence of choice and still receive a high degree of care and attention, according to their needs. What’s more? Volunteers or paid professionals, or family members or friends can provide them with the care that they need, at their own place!
Non-medical home care Albuquerque can encompass a variety that can keep seniors engaged and enrich their lives physically, mentally, and emotionally. Examples include personal grooming and hygiene, transferring and positioning, incontinence care, mobility assistance, nutrition, meal preparation, laundry, housekeeping, shopping, and more!
2. Independent Living
Independent living facilities are meant for older adults who can carry out daily activities with little to no assistance. As such, these facilities do not have nursing staff or offer medical care.
Housing options vary widely from freestanding homes to apartment-style living. Arrangements are senior-friendly, compactly designed, easy to navigate, and don’t require maintenance or yard work. For basic housekeeping and laundry services, you can hire a help.
Independent living communities often have swimming pools, fitness centers, and other amenities to cater to different interest groups. Most also have clubhouses or recreational centers on-site, giving residents the opportunity to participate in activities and connect with peers.
3. Assisted Living
Assisted living facilities can be apartment complexes, converted homes, or large renovated buildings like schools. Seniors can take up shared rooms or private ones. The private ones cost on the higher side. Apartment-style assisted living also comes with scaled down kitchens. Facilities usually have group dining areas and common recreational areas for socializing with peers.
This type of facility is better suited for seniors who want or need help with certain daily activities like cooking, traveling short distances, bathing, getting dressed, getting to the bathroom, etc. While privacy and independence are encouraged, help is just a phone call away with 24/7 access to care and support.
4. Nursing Homes
Nursing homes differ from the previously discussed senior living facilities in the type of care they offer. Nursing homes do provide custodial care, which includes helping with feeding, bathing, getting dressed, and other daily activities. However, this type of facility also provides a high level of medical care and attention to seniors.
Moreover, medical professionals are always present on the premises of the living facility and licensed medical practitioners supervise all patients. As such, a nursing home is the perfect type of living facility for seniors who’s medical and personal care needs cannot be handled at home or in other facilities.
Seniors needing a higher degree of care temporarily, because of an illness or hospitalization, or due to a chronic illness can particularly benefit from a nursing home facility.
5. Continuing Care Retirement Communities
A continuing care retirement community (CCRC) is basically a combination of independent living, assisted living, and nursing home facilities, providing a full range of services and care to seniors. The availability of meals, health services, personal care, emergency help, housekeeping, transport facilities, and a host of social and educational activities make CCRCs the ideal solution for senior living and care.
CCRCs cost significantly higher than other types of care, but seniors can enjoy peace of mind knowing that they won’t have to shift to another facility, should they need increased care in the future. Also, owing to the various services and amenities offered, spouses can continue being in the same facility even if they require different levels of care.
6. Memory Care
This is a special kind of facility, which provides care to senior patients with varying degrees of Alzheimer’s or dementia. Note that assisted living communities and CCRCs might have separate care units for such individuals on their premises, but memory care is a distinct form of skilled nursing specifically catering to patients with memory problems.
Memory care facilities are usually equipped with round the clock supervised care. Most importantly, they have ample safety features in place like alarmed doors and emergency response systems to prevent seniors from wandering outside and putting themselves in danger.
Additionally, memory care facilities are spacious, have easy to navigate floor plans, and use comforting wall and floor colors. They also employ enhanced lighting, visual cues, color-coding, and memory boxes to create a comfortable and familiar environment for the residents.
7. Hospice Care
This type of care is designed to provide pain relief and comfort to seniors facing a terminal illness. The service primarily focuses on improving the quality of life instead of trying to lengthen it. Care may be provided in-home or at senior living facilities, depending on choice and feasibility.
Hospice care teams might include medical practitioners, social workers, counselors, volunteers, and religious heads, all working together as a team to ensure that the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the senior person are tended. Hospice caregivers may also extend their services to family members by offering support through counselling, housekeeping, shopping, etc.
Realizing that you or a loved one can’t go about daily tasks without help, can make you feel miserable. That being said, it’s crucial to assess current needs and analyze how they will evolve over time. Making the right choice now will only ensure a healthy and fulfilling life ahead!
While help is at hand, choosing the appropriate care option does involve a bit of work. Whether you’re looking for senior living and care options for yourself or for your loved one, you now understand the various senior living choices available. Consider your requirements, come to terms with changes, be open to possibilities, and you’re sure to find happiness!