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When Is It Time for Assisted Living?

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A senior woman happily talking to one of the nurses in an assisted living facility community.

It can be difficult to watch a loved one age. Watching the gradual changes over time can be difficult and emotional, and admitting we need help is something we’d all often rather avoid. But sometimes, you or a loved one may need help with daily activities, and this is when it may be time to consider a move to assisted living.

These communities can be an excellent way for your loved one to have a high quality of life while still retaining their independence. If you notice a loved one is starting to struggle with their daily needs, it might be time to discuss this move with them. Choosing the right assisted living community is important, so it helps to talk through everything together!

What Is Assisted Living?

Assisted living communities are a form of senior living designed for seniors who may need some help with some daily activities but would like to retain their independence. These communities are residential-style apartments or homes grouped together with a team on-site to help the residents with their daily needs.

Usually, these communities offer private homes for the residents, and each person receives a custom-tailored plan designed to help them with the specific daily needs they may have. However, the communities have a focus on independence as well—residents can receive specialized help, but nothing is forced if they’d rather do things themselves.

They can receive aid with dressing, bathing, and grooming, or just get a hand cooking and cleaning every once in a while. By focusing on each person’s unique needs, these communities are an excellent way to make sure each resident feels heard and valued but can still access care when they need it.

When to Consider a Move to Assisted Living

When it comes to discussing senior living with a loved one, it can be an emotionally difficult time. After all, it’s rare that a person is willing to admit they need help! It’s important to know the signs that your loved one may need more help than they’re admitting.

It helps to look out for the following:

  • They’re struggling with daily activities like bathing, dressing, cooking, or cleaning
  • They’re experiencing mobility problems or starting to fall more often
  • Their health is declining, or they have a chronic condition requiring ongoing care
  • They’re feeling more isolated, secluded, or alone
  • They’re starting to forget daily important things, like names, financial information, or getting lost
  • Serious weight changes

By keeping an eye out for age-related problems like this, you can know when it might be time for your loved one to consider a move to assisted living.

A young woman talking to her senior father about assisted living while they are both sitting on a couch.

How to Talk to a Loved One About Assisted Living

This conversation can be difficult, so it’s important you approach it with empathy and respect. After all, a move to a senior community can be a big change, and your loved ones may be resistant to considering such a move. It helps to:

  • Choose the right time and place. A private, comfortable environment can make a big difference.
  • Involve caring family and friends who can help show support
  • Listen to their concerns, and share your own
  • Communicate openly and make sure you show your care
  • Prioritize patience and understanding of their position
  • Explain the benefits of senior living and how it can improve their life
  • Scheduling a tour of local communities so they can see for themselves

By clearly showing your loved one that a senior living community can help improve their quality of life, they’ll be much more likely to be open to the idea. Most assisted living communities offer tours if you contact them ahead of time, so it never hurts to look around the area!

The move to assisted living can seem daunting, and it’s important you’re receptive to your loved one’s concerns. Including your loved one in the decision to make the move to assisted living is essential for their happiness—forcing a person to make the change can lead to resistance.

If you include them in every step of the process, it can make a big difference. Show them that their feelings are valid and discuss their concerns together! 

How to Choose an Assisted Living Community

When it comes to choosing the right community, there are a few things to consider. It helps to look into the offered programs, services, and amenities—most communities offer many different programs and classes for their residents to join. Make sure that whatever choices are offered will suit your loved one’s preferences!

Location matters as well. It helps to pick a community that suits their lifestyle. If they love being near nature, look into communities that are near forests, parks, or beaches. If they prefer being able to visit the shops in a local town, consider a community that offers transportation services. By picking a community that suits their needs, your loved one can have a higher quality of life.

Here at Maumee Pointe Assisted Living and Memory Care, we understand that the decision to move to assisted living is a big one, and we’re here to support you and your loved one with this transition. Contact us today for more information, or schedule a visit for you and your loved one to see our community for yourself!

Written by Angela Clark

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