Is it the right time for assisted living? You might be reflecting on your own situation, or thinking of the wellbeing of your loved ones. Whatever the case, deciding can be a stressful and confusing time if you don’t know what signs to look for.
What is Assisted Living?
Seniors who have previously lived independently need to be with a caregiver after they experience accidents or falls when they are recovering from a disease, or when they experience other indicators of ill health. The same is true for an elderly person who have Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or other chronic diseases.
In many instances, however, acting as a caregiver is too costly. Caregivers sometimes face the burden of not only providing home healthcare, but also developing illness themselves from the stress of taking care of another person. Employing a caregiver also has its own costs.
Assisted living is a good alternative to making sure that your loved one’s needs are met. In an assisted living facility, elderly or disabled people are provided nursing care, housekeeping, and prepared meals. Though the decision for them to live elsewhere is a difficult one, there are clear indicators that would make assisted living the right choice.
Recognizing Signs for Assisted Living
- Increasing needs for health care
A major reason why assisted living may be necessary is the increase in care needs. Independent living will not cut it for elderly individuals who have recently taken a fall, an accident, or illness. Seniors who have a worsening chronic health condition should also be assisted in day-to-day activities.
As both time and the condition progress, the person’s care needs might surpass the abilities of a caregiver. It can simply be beyond the caregiver’s training or physical abilities. It can even put the caregiver at risk, with increased caregiver stress and exposure to aggression and other dementia behaviors.
Shifting to assisted living will ensure that your loved one will be taken care for by trained professionals.
- Difficulty in managing activities of daily living (ADLs)
As people grow older, the skills needed in independent living, such as dressing, cooking, and doing laundry, become more difficult to accomplish. Difficulties in managing essential daily tasks are a sign that it may be time for assisted living.
You can see signs of neglect in the way they handle their daily affairs, as well as in how their home is maintained. Stacks of unopened mail, an unruly yard, spills that haven’t been cleaned, and similar disorderly behavior can all point to dementia.
As old age and dementia progress, the risk of wandering also increases. At later stages, those with dementia can leave and become vulnerable of falls and injuries at the slightest lack of supervision. In these instances, it would be better for your loved one to be in an environment where they can be easily accompanied, supervised, and aided in times of injuries.
These are just some of the signs to look for when deciding whether to send your loved one to an assisted living facility. For the safety and health of your loved one, consider the option of assisted living should these recognizable signs surface.
Written by The Village Of Bedford Walk, a senior living community in Columbia, MO.