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When Is It Time for Assisted Living?

Serving as a caregiver for an aging loved one can be a bonding, rewarding experience. However, it is also an experience that is always filled with questions. Is the care provided at home all that is needed? What signs are there that more care is needed? What are the options for senior care outside the home?

When it comes time to make a change from an older loved one living at home to a safer senior care environment, it can be an emotional time for all involved. For younger family members, it can be difficult to see an older loved one not be able to do the things they used to do. For older adults, the idea of senior care or moving to a new place can feel scary or intimidating.

Thanks to the baby boomer generation, the population of American seniors age 65 and over is about 13% of the population; that number is expected to rise to 21% by the year 2050. Thankfully, there are many options for senior care and senior communities that fit a wide range of needs.

For many families, assisted living is the first choice for senior support and senior care. So, what is assisted living for seniors? And how does assisted living work?

What Is Assisted Living for Seniors?

Assisted living for seniors is a type of care that gives older adults personalized care in a residential setting. Assisted living care is for seniors who are mostly healthy and able to live independently, but who do need a higher level of support than independent living or living alone. Assisted living also provides a healthy lifestyle and social engagement.

The most common assisted living services include:

  • Medication management
  • Support with the activities of daily living
  • Housekeeping
  • Meals
  • Laundry
  • Social programs
  • Social and educational activities
  • Transportation services

At assisted living communities like Greenfield Rehabilitation & Health Care Center, residents also enjoy a coffee bar, a barbershop and salon, restaurant-style dining and an outdoor community patio.

When Is It Time for Assisted Living?

So, when is it time for assisted living? There are many general warning signs that an older adult may need more senior care due to a change in health status or ability. Because there are so many variations of what this change looks like, it is important to understand what to look for. Some of the signs to watch for include:

Worsening medical conditions. AARP estimates that more than 70 million older adults have at least one chronic medical condition. Progressive issues like Alzheimer’s disease or diseases that require specialized care, like heart disease, can all end up requiring higher levels of senior care as time passes.

Money issues. Bills can pile up if they are not properly managed. While some diseases, like dementia, can impact memory and the ability to manage bills, disorganization and memory loss that comes with age can also play a role.

Unkept living space. A dirty living space may be a sign that it is time for assisted living. It is common for a senior to gradually have more difficulty cleaning up, vacuuming or doing the dishes.

Unhealthy eating or not eating. Is there fresh food in the fridge? Are nutritious meals being prepared and eaten? If food is left out to spoil or the kitchen has no groceries, it may be a sign that the senior is not cooking or is unable to shop.

Senior isolation. Isolation can affect a senior’s overall health. When seniors are isolated and stop participating in hobbies or social interactions, they increase their risk for depression and other serious health issues, like dementia and heart disease.

Poor hygiene. Major changes in hygiene, such as poor grooming or body odor, can be clear signs that a higher level of senior care is needed. Lapses in grooming can be due to a lack of motivation, memory lapses or because of a medical problem.

About Greenfield Rehabilitation & Health Care Center

Greenfield Rehabilitation & Health Care Center is a community committed to helping each resident enjoy the unique experience they deserve. The community offers multiple levels of care and support to help residents at any phase of need. Greenfield provides the security of helping residents with activities of daily living, while also focusing on engagement and enjoyment for each resident, each day. Residents experience a variety of options for their daily schedule, all while enjoying the support of team members, the friendship of neighbors and the opportunity to try and learn new things.

Interested in learning more about Greenfield Rehabilitation & Health Care Center? Contact us today to learn more and to schedule a tour!