5 Reasons Why Assisted Living is Better than Home Care

Making a decision to move an aging parent to assisted living is usually a struggle for many families. Given an option, we would all choose to remain in our homes for as long as possible. But staying at home may not be the best decision in each situation. There are many reasons to move your loved one to assisted living, some of which people don’t always consider.

Keep your loved one safe

For seniors living alone, security is one of the top concerns. There’s a high risk of injuries especially if the home has not been modified for senior living. Moving in with an adult child or other family member may not be an option. Assisted living facilities have proper security to ensure residents do not wander away. You can have peace of mind knowing that your loved one is safe.

Hiring a live-in caregiver is too costly

At-home living can be very expensive for most families. Your loved one may still get the same level of care at an assisted living community as they would if you paid a live-in caregiver. You will still need to foot the bill when it comes to their medical needs as well as social needs. Living at home means that you will need to modify the space to make sure it is safe for your loved one. This extra cost of renovation can be avoided by taking your loved one to assisted living

Increase socialization

Senior living communities provide many opportunities for socialization. Signing up the elderly person to an adult day program will help him/her meet new people and develop strong bonds with other residents at the facility.

Maintain good health

Many seniors living at home suffer from malnutrition or serious health concerns that are made worse because of a poor diet. Assisted living communities ensure that your loved one is well fed and healthy. You can have peace of mind knowing that all the meals have been prepared well and that your loved one receives their medication as they are supposed to. This will eventually increase their quality of life.

Offer the best protection

Seniors also need to be protected from people who may want to take advantage of them. This is especially the case if the aging person is suffering from dementia or some form of cognitive decline. He/she may be taken advantage of by even close family members who aim to benefit financially from their mental issue.

4 Critical Areas to Consider When Choosing Assisted Living

It’s important to give your elderly parent a full, active and well balanced lifestyle even if it’s in an assisted living community. For this reason, you need to choose a community that is well designed to meet the medical, social, physical and emotional needs of your loved one. We have compiled a list of things to go over when choosing assisted living. We hope this will help you find the best community for your loved one.

  1. Consider the community’s atmosphere

    Visit the facility and take a look at its outward appearance. Will your loved one feel at home or like they are in a hospital? How welcoming is the staff at the residence? Think about aspects such as the kind of residents at the facility, whether they socialize with each other and if they would be appropriate housemates for your parents. Ask if visits are allowed every time. Make sure the facility’s location is ideal for you.

  2. Assess the community’s physical features
    Look at the way the facility has been set up. From the floor plan to the doorways, rooms and exterior space, make sure the design will fit your loved one’s needs. For instance, if your parent is on a wheelchair or uses a walker, you want to make sure the doorways and hallways as well as rooms will accommodate their move. The shelves and cupboards should be easy to reach and the atmosphere should be clean, smelling fresh and well ventilated. Make sure the residence has adequate lighting and proper security in case a resident wanders away.
  3. Review the contractual agreement
    You’ll need to assess your loved one’s needs and the cost of assisted living. They should provide you with a contractual agreement that contains details on the type of healthcare offered, supportive services, admission fees and refund policy among other information. You also need a written plan for the type of care your loved one will receive. Find out if the facility assesses the resident’s needs prior to admission and if you can access financial assistance from the government or other programs that support different initiatives.
  4. Understand what services and how they are offered
    Assisted living communities usually provide a list of services that include ADLs such as dressing and bathing as well as housekeeping services, transportation and physical therapy. If you have certain needs that must be met, start by asking about the services offered at the facility.

How to Deal With Guilt When Moving a Loved One to Assisted Living

Most seniors will not instantly agree to move to leave their homes or an environment they are familiar with and move into an assisted living community. As a caregiver or relative, you may be overwhelmed with guilt when making this decision even though you believe that the transition is what your loved one needs. Here’s some information that can help you be at peace with your decision.

Understanding why the decision was made

The decision to move your loved one to an assisted living community may arise due to certain changes like an injury, conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s or other reasons that made you realize your loved one needs better care provided at a community. The feelings of remorse can be alleviated when you know you did the right thing and that your loved one is going to receive full-time professional care.

Do not be in denial

Children are especially most vulnerable when making a decision to move their parent to a community. The feeling of confusion and guilt intensifies because they feel like the people who have been their caregivers for years are now being taken away. It is common to feel guilty because of the role reversal. Dealing with issues like dementia can be overwhelming emotionally and physically for the caregiver. You may not be able to continue running your day to day life with the demented family member. Seeing your loved one in those difficult situations every day can be heartbreaking. It’s time to get them the care needed in order to make the situation better for yourself and your loved one.

Anticipate the move

It’s important to make sure you are in the right emotional state for the move. You can do this by speaking to a psychotherapist regarding your decision and he/she can help you to deal with the real issues involving your parents. You may even visit the community together with your parents. It helps when you keep them in the loop prior to making the move.

Stop second-guessing

Don’t think about what you should or could have done because this will only intensify the guilty feeling. It will make it harder and more stressful for you to even visit or spend time with your loved one at the community. Stop wondering on whether you did the right thing and focus on making sure your loved one is getting the best care possible and adjusting to the new environment.

Moving To Assisted Living: How to make the Process Easy for a Loved One

Moving a loved one to an assisted living community is not as simple as we ‘d like. It takes time before he/she transitions to the new home and adjusts to the environment. Home or miles away you need to be there as the primary caregiver. What has changed is the living arrangement but your role as the primary caregiver still remains when he/she moves.

Plan for the move

It’s important to encourage your loved one by having a good farewell. Remember that he/she may have established relationships in their home so they feel that they will be losing this as they move to a completely new setting Prepare your loved one for the personal and emotional process of moving by discussing it with them ahead of time. You can create a dinner party in your loved one’s home prior to the week of moving and invite close friends and neighbors. This will help your loved one in starting over in a new and unfamiliar setting.

Allow them to establish a familiar setting.

Your loved one may want to carry certain possessions as they move to a new setting. Allow for this as it usually helps them to make the environment more familiar. Sometimes loved ones will mourn missing their stuff that was discarded or given away upon their move. Don’t be too quick to get rid of your loved one’s items when they insist on carrying some when moving. Help them create a setting that is similar to the one they left home by carrying some of their stuff to assisted living. It helps them feel at home instantly and get through the difficult transition.

Understand who does what

When moving your loved one to an assisted living community, it’s important to understand what kind of help he/she will be getting from the staff and who is in charge for him/her. It is probably your first time dealing with a retirement community or senior long term care. Feel free to ask questions or clarifications especially when it comes to the people responsible for fulfilling your loved one’s needs. Let them breakdown the lengthy contractual document for you in a way you can understand.

The services offered by assisted living communities vary depending on the budget and type of care needed. You need to have a primary point person who you can talk to in various circumstances. In the same way, the community should be informed on who the primary point person in your family is just in case there’s an emergency and someone needs to be contacted.

The 7 Main Stages of Dementia

Medical specialists as well as caregivers divide dementia into stages to enable them measure the severity or progress of the condition. In each stage, a person’s cognitive function declines to a certain extent. Most people are aware of severe, moderate or mild Alzheimer’s but you can categorize dementia into 7 stages.

Stage 1: normal mental functionThis is the lowest dementia stage characterized by no cognitive impairment. At this stage, dementia doesn’t show any symptoms like memory loss, behavioral or social changes.

This is the lowest dementia stage characterized by no cognitive impairment. At this stage, dementia doesn’t show any symptoms like memory loss, behavioral or social changes.Stage 2: Very minor cognitive decline

Stage 2: Very minor cognitive declineAt this point, there’s very mild impairment that may quickly go unnoticed by the caregiver. It’s still the onset stages of dementia and the individual doesn’t have very noticeable cognitive decline.

At this point, there’s very mild impairment that may quickly go unnoticed by the caregiver. It’s still the onset stages of dementia and the individual doesn’t have very noticeable cognitive decline.Stage 3: Mild cognitive impairment

Stage 3: Mild cognitive impairmentThis stage is characterized by more regular cognitive issues that caregivers can notice. It is very important to recognize the signs of dementia at this stage because you can seek treatment and make the condition manageable. Common signs of dementia at this stage include verbal repetition, lack of concentration and organization, trouble driving, working, memory loss and forgetfulness.

This stage is characterized by more regular cognitive issues that caregivers can notice. It is very important to recognize the signs of dementia at this stage because you can seek treatment and make the condition manageable. Common signs of dementia at this stage include verbal repetition, lack of concentration and organization, trouble driving, working, memory loss and forgetfulness.Stage 4: Moderate cognitive decline

Stage 4: Moderate cognitive declineThe early symptoms of dementia that were mentioned above will become more prominent at this stage. This stage is mostly referred to as early signs of Alzheimer’s. Caregivers should stay alert for signs such as social withdrawal, lack of responsiveness, denial of symptoms and emotional moodiness.

The early symptoms of dementia that were mentioned above will become more prominent at this stage. This stage is mostly referred to as early signs of Alzheimer’s. Caregivers should stay alert for signs such as social withdrawal, lack of responsiveness, denial of symptoms and emotional moodiness.Stage 5: Moderately severe cognitive decline

Stage 5: Moderately severe cognitive declineAt stage five of dementia, the individual is no longer able to do day to day activities such as dressing and bathing without some assistance. This is also marked as the onset of mid-stage dementia The symptoms that will manifest at this stage include confusion, reduced problem solving ability, forgetting personal details and events.

At stage five of dementia, the individual is no longer able to do day to day activities such as dressing and bathing without some assistance. This is also marked as the onset of mid-stage dementia The symptoms that will manifest at this stage include confusion, reduced problem solving ability, forgetting personal details and events.Stage 6: Middle dementia.

Stage 6: Middle dementia.At this stage, the individual is considered to have a moderately severe Alzheimer’s disease The person would need a caregiver to help in activities of daily living such as dressing, bathing and eating. Some people experience sleep difficulty, incontinence and anxiety. Others are even unable to recognize their loved ones.

At this stage, the individual is considered to have a moderately severe Alzheimer’s disease The person would need a caregiver to help in activities of daily living such as dressing, bathing and eating. Some people experience sleep difficulty, incontinence and anxiety. Others are even unable to recognize their loved ones.Stage 7: Severe Alzheimer’s disease.

Stage 7: Severe Alzheimer’s disease.At this stage, the person has very severe cognitive decline. He/she is typically unable to take care of themselves, communicate and may even have mobility issues. At very severe cognitive decline the person may be unable to walk, speak or do anything without help.

At this stage, the person has very severe cognitive decline. He/she is typically unable to take care of themselves, communicate and may even have mobility issues. At very severe cognitive decline the person may be unable to walk, speak or do anything without help.Identifying the stages of dementia will help you or a loved one to plan for the care you need when you need it.

Identifying the stages of dementia will help you or a loved one to plan for the care you need when you need it.