Today’s thriving senior population is often engaged, active, and more independent than any previous generation. But, most older Americans will need some help as they age, even if it’s just assistance with transportation and shopping. The elderly may also become lonely as they lose friends and family members. Fortunately, assisted living communities and in-home care are both options that offer answers.
Seniors who choose in-home care can age in place, which means they stay in familiar homes. Caregivers travel to them, providing whatever services are required. Many Texas seniors choose assisted living communities that offer a comfortable, safe environment and active social life. Both options have benefits, but evaluating both options is essential to find the best fit. Critical factors to consider include the following.
When assisted living communities are designed, safety features are built in. For instance, a typical community offering assisted living in San Antonio, TX includes senior-friendly housing, security, and 24 access to help. Homes are equipped with features like emergency call buttons and grab bars. Communities feature wheelchair ramps, wide sidewalks, and well-lit common areas.
It is possible for homes to become senior safe, too. Seniors or their families can modify homes by widening doorways, adding medication-reminder technology, installing a stair lift, and adding a medical alert system.
A Social Life
Living in an assisted living community ensures seniors can participate in group activities and make new friends. If they want, residents can enjoy vibrant social lives and physical activities. They may enjoy bingo, holiday parties, and planned outings. Many seniors enjoy living near their peers, reminding them of their younger days.
In contrast, remaining in a beloved home and receiving care there can be comforting, and many people thrive when they are on their own. They enjoy the company of friends and family on their own terms and love the quiet life. However, being alone might also leave seniors vulnerable to isolation. Loneliness can compromise the immune system, making it easier to contract viruses. The National Institute on Aging reports that isolation increases the risk for depression, cancer, heart problems, and Alzheimer’s.
Quality of Life
Surveys show that 90% of adults prefer to stay in familiar surroundings as they age, so many arrange for in-home care that lets them live on their terms. It’s easier for seniors to continue with favorite activities, and see old friends and family when they feel like it. There are also health benefits for those at risk for dementia. Retirement Living professionals say that familiar sights, sounds, and smells can help trigger memories in dementia patients.
However, seniors often find that they love living in assisted or independent living communities once they acclimate. Increased social activities can help slow cognitive decline and improve their overall well-being. Community living is also carefree, as homes often include housekeeping services. Residents can still invite friends and family and choose a lifestyle that’s as active or quiet as they want.
For most people, the cost of senior care is a significant deciding factor when choosing an option. However, no simple rule determines whether in-home care or assisted living is the least expensive. Cost depends on individual circumstances.
Home care is the best choice for those who need help with daily personal care, medication reminders, companionship, and life tasks like shopping or preparing meals. Generally, home care is the most budget-friendly choice if a senior requires 40 hours or less per week of paid home care. However, several factors can change the equation. Options can be affected by an individual’s state of residence and whether they rent or own a home.
While assisted living is the less expensive choice for those who need 24/7 care, additional services like Alzheimer’s care will drive up costs. Sites like payingforseniorcare.com offer helpful calculators that simplify the process of comparing choices. Remember that pricing can vary widely from state to state, so it is essential to consider all the details.
Seniors who choose home care must pay for the cost of groceries and either prepare their meals or arrange for in-home care professionals to provide the service. Caregivers will monitor clients’ meals and ensure they are well-nourished.
Meals are included in the cost of assisted living. Communities have cheerful, large dining rooms where residents can enjoy chef-prepared meals with friends. Chefs are careful to ensure food is healthy and appealing. They can accommodate individual dietary requirements and often arrange for special holiday menus. If residents prefer to eat in quieter surroundings, they can. Caregivers ensure that all residents get three meals a day.
As seniors age and need more help, many move into assisted living communities or arrange for at-home care. There is no one choice that is right for everyone, so it is essential to weigh the merits of each to determine the best option.
Villa de San Antonio is a lively senior living community in San Antonio, TX. The exemplary, supportive staff ensures that every resident has the opportunity to enjoy comfortable daily routines and a vibrant lifestyle.