If you have a loved one who is living alone and needs more care or a family member who can no longer maintain their current home, you may be looking at your options for their future care needs. Assisted living is one option you should research. Before you make a decision about where your loved one will live, you should understand the various aspects of assisted living.
Assisted living is a community that provides assistance for its residents. This assistance varies by person, but it allows them to maintain as much independence as possible. It may include residential care facilities, personal care homes, and adult congregate living. These communities must follow state regulations.
These communities provide help to the residents for basic activities such as dressing, eating, bathing and toileting. They may assist with transfers is the person has limited mobility. Often, there are programs to help residents develop and maintain relationships as well as skills and abilities.
When doing research, you’ll find several different types of communities for seniors. Many of these communities fall under one of two categories: independent living or assisted living. You may hear of senior apartments or retirement communities. Another catch-phrase is 55-plus communities. All of these titles fall under independent living.
Independent living communities provide an environment especially designed for seniors. However, they focus on those who need little to no help. While there are a few similarities between independent living communities and assisted living communities, there are many differences.
In independent living communities, there are usually apartments for the residents. They have their own living space which often includes a kitchen. The resident may prepare their own meal or they can choose to eat in a common dining area with the other residents. In assisted living communities, everyone eats in a central location.
Residents have access to maintenance and housekeeping so they don’t have to deal with those jobs in many independent living communities. These tasks are also taken care of in assisted living.
The main difference between the two types of communities is the level of care provided to the resident. In independent living properties, the resident is responsible for most of their own care, except for meals and housecleaning. With assisted living communities, they receive help with bathing, dressing and other daily tasks while still maintaining as much independence as possible. In many cases, a person will start out in independent living and transition to assisted living as needed.
Making the decision to move into assisted living is often a difficult task. Most people don’t want to give up their independence. However, this type of community is often more about what you gain rather than what you lose.
One of the primary benefits of moving into an assisted living community like Federal Way is the increase in socialization. Many times, a senior will spend most of their time at home alone if they are unable to get out and visit friends. People they know are no longer able to get out and about and their kids are busy with their own activities, leaving a senior feeling isolated and alone.
In an assisted living community, they can meet new people around their age who have similar things in common. They will develop friendships and eat with the same people each day or go to special activities with their new friends.
Another benefit of assisted living is reduced responsibilities. A person who lives in their own home still has so many decisions to make and tasks to take care of. When they are no longer able to maintain the house, it becomes a burden. In a place like Village Green, they don’t have those worries.
Many people have this idea that moving into assisted living means they are losing their independence, but the reality is the exact opposite. A great assisted living community can help a person preserve their ability to live independently by assisting them where it’s needed. Programs exist in these communities to help the senior maintain their physical and mental health. They will discover exercise programs, hobby groups and many other activities that helps to condition their physical and mental health. They are able to do more for themselves because they remain active.
One of the concerns for people who are considering assisted living is how much it will cost. A common myth is that assisted living is expensive for the average senior. This level of care is often cheaper than home health care and maintaining a home as a person ages and is unable to do the work themselves.
The costs of assisted living depend on what services are offered. There may be more than one level of care at different prices. The AARP estimated that the average price of assisted living around Seattle ranges from less than $2000 per month to over $7500.
There are ways to afford the cost of assisted living. Some people take out equity loans while others use a reverse mortgage to pay for living expenses. It’s a good idea to talk to a financial planner about your situation to help you determine how much your loved one can afford.
Determining the time to move to assisted living is often a difficult decision. It’s hard to face the fact that your loved one is not as capable as before. However, delaying that decision could be dangerous for their physical welfare.
Physical limitations is one way to tell it’s time to make the move. If your parent has difficulty getting dressed, bathing or doing other personal care tasks, they may need the assistance that a community provides. If they’ve fallen recently or fallen multiple times, they may need to be in a setting where someone can check on them regularly.
Know what your loved one is eating. If they are not able to fix nutritious meals, it can cause other physical problems. They may need someone to prepare their meals for them.
Pay attention to their mental condition as well. If they are forgetful and leave things undone, it could endanger their health and life. Notice if they are taking medication and remembering doctor’s appointments.
Lack of socialization will lower their quality of life, so if they spend most of their time alone or you notice they seem more depressed or withdrawn, moving to an assisted living community could be beneficial.
Another sign is the lack of upkeep for their home. If they are no longer able to care for their home, it may be an indicator that they need fewer responsibilities to deal with. If you live far away from your senior parent, talk to friends and neighbors to get an assessment of your parent’s behavior and attitude.
Google assisted living communities in Seattle, and you’ll find a long list of communities. How do you know which one is perfect for your loved one? You’ll have to be willing to put in some time and effort and do some in-depth research, but you can find the right place for your loved one to call home.
First, you need to know what are your priorities. Each assisted living community is unique and has special programs. Know what your loved one needs, and search for a place that meets those needs.
Create a list of questions to ask the administrators of the retirement community. You’ll want to ask about pricing, but also consider security and living conditions to ensure your loved one will be a in place that enhances their quality of life.
Set up a time to meet with an administrator and tour the community. You want to see for yourself how the place looks. Is it clean and does the staff greet you? Does the décor seem warm and inviting? Are there private rooms and how are residents grouped? Make sure you feel good about the place you choose to entrust with your loved one. Places like Village Green should treat your loved one like family and ensure they receive the respect and care they deserve.
Moving into assisted living is often the final move for a loved one. It’s a big decision, one that is followed up with a lot of work and a period of adjustment. One of the first tasks you’ll have is selling their current home. You’ll have to decide if you need to sell the home first or move them into assisted living before selling.
One of the most difficult and important tasks of moving is deciding what to take. You’ll be limited on what items you can move with the loved one. If possible, they should be involved in this decision as well as determining what to do with the rest of the stuff. Select items that are important to them and will help make their new place feel more like home.
Once your loved one has moved into the assisted living community, make plans to spend some time with them. Those first few days will be difficult for them as they adjust to new routines and a new home. Visit with them to help them with the adjustment. Help them get to know the staff and other residents. You may want to plan to attend some programs or activities to encourage your loved one to get involved. Spending this time with your family member will be time well spent as they adapt to their new environment.
Living in an assisted living community like Village Green is a lot different from what many expect. You won’t get the feeling of a hospital or facility environment. The staff here at Village Green work hard to make this place feel like home. Dining areas resemble a restaurant while the fitness room and coffee and juice bar resemble what you would find out in the regular community.
We also provide special areas for the residents like card rooms, libraries and a movie theater. These areas are designed to help keep residents active and involved. Special events give them something to look forward to while regular activities keep their minds and bodies active. The beautiful outdoor area around Village Green offers an attractive view for residents where they can either take a walk and enjoy or at least look out at the scenery.
Guests are always welcomed at Village Green with guest rooms to make them more comfortable. This also allows them to spend more time with their loved one.
When your loved one moves into an assisted living community, it becomes the perfect opportunity for you to move from being caretaker to being an adult child again. You can reconnect as parent-child and enjoy each other’s company without the worries of a caregiver.
One of the first things to do when your loved one moves into an assisted living community is to find out their routines. Learn about transportation to doctor appointments as well as regularly-scheduled activities. Find out about special events, such as holiday entertainment. Consider visiting during those times to share in the events with your family member.
Don’t hesitate to check in with the staff and ask them how your loved one is doing. Getting their perspective can ease your mind about your loved one’s condition. Find out when they have medical appointments scheduled so you can stay updated on their health.
Places like Village Green encourage family members to visit as often as they can. Even when you can’t be here in person, you can call your loved one once you know their schedule. This not only provides peace of mind for you, but it shows your family member that you still care and they aren’t forgotten.
When family members and assisted living communities work together, they can create a better quality of life for the senior. Moving to an assisted living center can be the beginning of a new phase for the person and help them live longer and better.