So you’ve observed some of the warning signs that it might be time to consider placement in an assisted living facility for your senior loved one. We covered those in our post on signs it’s time to consider assisted living.
Let’s all find out more about who is there and what things are happening at the assisted living facilities you consider.
Assisted living centers are usually for seniors who are no longer able to care for themselves independently but just aren’t ready for a nursing home. They are able to complete some tasks of daily living for themselves but need oversight for certain things, such as medication administration, grooming or safety.
That’s what makes it assisted living.
Seniors in Today’s Assisted Living Facilities
- Nine out of ten residents are white and seven of ten are female
- 54% are over age 85
- In 2010, the median length of stay was 22 months
- Medicaid paid for about 19% of residents in 2010
- In 2010, the cost of an assisted living stay was $3,165 per month
- What assistance do they need?
– 72% get help with bathing
– 52% with dressing
– 25% with transferring
– 22% with eating
– 26% received help with no activities of daily living
– 38% got help with three or more activities of daily living
- High blood pressure leads the list of common chronic diseases, followed by Alzheimer’s or dementia, heart disease, depression, arthritis, osteoporosis, diabetes, pulmonary disease, cancer and stroke
- 26% had four to ten chronic diseases, 6% had none
What this data illustrates is how vulnerable our senior loved ones are, how their aging status can lead to functional decline and how important assisted living facilities are in providing much needed care for our seniors.
What to Expect In an Assisted Living Facility
- Services that include transportation to medical appointments or elsewhere, therapies including physical and occupational, skilled nursing, incontinence care, health monitoring, and social activities.
- Rooms for one person, two people or apartment style living accommodations.
- Different facilities provide differing levels of service, such as incontinent care, wound care, or mobility assistance. Each level of services usually comes with an added fee. Some centers restrict admission depending on the condition of the senior, such as needing assistance with eating.
- Most facilities require that your senior eat at least one meal each day in a congregate dining room.
- Two thirds of assisted living residents have at least one visitor per week, almost one in ten have no visitors, and about half leave the facility at least twice a month.
- Some facilities will discharge seniors with cognitive impairment and others have memory care units that specialize in cognitive impairments.
- Assisted living facilities offer socialization opportunities and activities to keep seniors active mentally and physically.
Consider Assisted Living Sooner Rather than Later
We hear from and about many seniors who wish they had entered an assisted living facility years earlier, as they enjoy new friendships and relief from caring for a home and themselves.
Considering moving to an assisted living facility should be done with caution. Visit each center you may consider and investigate their policies to be sure that it is the right fit for your senior. Include your senior in the decision making whenever possible.
The passages of life as our loved ones age and their needs change can be full of decisions but careful planning and research will lead to happiness for you and your senior.