Contemplating the care you may need someday may seem like a waste of time especially if you’re in the early phase of your retirement. However, understanding the senior living care options available, whether you choose to live at home or in a senior living community, is the best way to prepare for the future. Senior living care options vary, so here’s a rundown of what to expect.
Independent living: offering the best of both worlds
If you don’t need daily care, independent living is the best choice of the senior living care options. Being in good health and able to care for yourself, the lifestyle of independent living is very much like living at home but with all the community amenities (e.g. chef-prepared meals, fitness and social activities, clubs) without the responsibilities of maintaining a home.
Another benefit of independent living is you can remain in the community if the need for additional care arises. You can make a seamless move to assisted living or memory care without waiting, eliminating the stress of finding a new place to live and leaving friends behind. If you ever find yourself in need of short-term rehabilitative care, you can receive that care in the community’s skilled nursing unit or in your independent living residence, depending on your circumstance.
Learn how a continuing care retirement community, like Carroll Lutheran Village, can be the best choice for your retirement in our blog post Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC): How to Choose.
Assisted living: providing the right amount of help
Assisted living is the best of senior living care options when you need a little help with daily tasks (e.g. dressing, managing medications, bathing). Of the senior living care options, assisted living offers more manageable private-living suites while caring and competent staff provide you with just the right amount of help in a very unobtrusive and respectful manner.
Of course, assisted living also includes amazing chef-prepared meals, so you and your family don’t have to worry about eating well, and special diets can be accommodated. Local transportation to appointments and shopping are also included. Plus, you’ll still have access to all the amenities like fun and engaging activities, planned events and plenty of companionship. Learn more about assisted living from WebMD’s What You Need to Know About Assisted Living.
Memory care: delivering secure independence
A diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease is a life-changing event, but it can be much easier to manage in senior living community that provides memory care support. You’ll receive daily help, as needed, but also enjoy engaging activities and therapies designed to help manage symptoms and retain the highest possible level of independence.
If you have a memory condition, receiving memory care support, of all the senior living care options, is going to provide you with the specialize care you’ll need because as the condition progresses you and your family can rest assured you are never alone and are thriving in an environment where professionals understand your memory condition and go the extra mile to ensure your health and well-being.
Unlike living at home, where security can be difficult and a costly full-time caregiver may be required, memory care provides everything you need 24/7/365. To better understand memory care, read AARP’s Memory Care: Specialized Support for People With Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
Skilled nursing: providing a higher level of care
When illness or injury occur, skilled nursing will likely be ideal of the senior living care options for you. Skilled nursing provides medical care to help you recover and rehabilitate quickly with necessary therapies, pain management, wound care and other treatments. Skilled nursing staff work with your physician to help you stay on track. Of all senior living care options, skilled nursing will get you back to normal the soonest, so you can get back to living your best life. Learn more in the Medicare’s Comparing Skilled Nursing Facilities? Questions to Ask.
If you think receiving care at home is your best option, you should understand the costs, which can be higher than you might think. According to the 2021 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, as the care needs increase, the cost of home care often exceeds senior living care options. Take a closer look at how the costs compare from our Comparing Costs. Affording a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC).
It’s never to early to start planning for when you may need care and knowing the senior living care options that are available is a great first step. Now you can start considering the circumstances in which you want to remain living at home and when to move to a senior living community. Download our Stay or Go Guide which will help you identify and decide on those circumstances.