If your perception of senior living communities is something boring, drab or depressing, you need to take a new look at what is out there now. The choices have never been better. Even the most intensive medical communities are offering a range of opportunities for learning and socializing. But perhaps what is most striking is how many older adults are now seeking out the carefree lifestyle offered by senior living communities because they want to live an active, fulfilling retirement that also includes a range of care options.
The first step is to evaluate just what your family needs. Many of today’s senior living communities such as New Perspective offer a range of supportive care levels.
Independent living communities aren’t geared toward a person who needs medical assistance. This is a lifestyle choice for seniors who want to live among their peers, free of home upkeep and daily obligations, in an environment filled with social opportunities, lifelong learning, entertainment, hospitality and wellness. Some residents of independent living have said it feels like being on vacation all the time, with a friendly staff ready to assist with needs such as housekeeping, transportation, concierge, dining and more.
Numerous options are available within this broad category, including:
• Gated senior living communities
• Luxury apartments, condos, and townhomes
• Fixed-price and low-income senior apartments
• Intentional communities that boast shared communal spaces and cooperative decision-making
Some independent living communities are linked to assisted living communities. Others are simply senior-specific independent housing. The bottom line is: independent living in senior living communities can be a great way to experience the joy of this chapter of your life—a carefree retirement.
When looking over the choices in senior living communities, keep in mind that there are multiple levels of care options available other than just independent living or memory care. Assisted living communities are a great choice if you or a loved one need help with some everyday tasks—such as personal care or taking medication—but still wish to live somewhat independently.
Rather than around-the-clock care, assisted living fills in care gaps as needed. Many offer cleaning or transportation services, and most offer prepared meals. Depending upon the assisted living community you choose, enrichment classes, exercise courses, and planned outings may also be available. Care when you need it, freedom when you don’t—assisted living is a very popular choice in senior living communities and could fit your needs.
Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs)
Inspired by the aging-in-place movement, these communities allow seniors to remain in the same community even as their needs change. Care options available in a CCRC include independent living, assisted living, and intensive nursing services.
There are some limitations. Seniors with a pre-existing neurodegenerative condition such as Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s, may not be eligible for care. Depending upon the community, and the health of your spouse or parent, it is possible they will need to move to a more specialized community for other care options as time goes by. But for most seniors, CCRCs offer the ability to remain on one campus.
In a life care CCRC, the continuum of care begins with independent living. As a senior’s needs change, they may move to assisted living or a nursing home. Some life care communities offer additional resources, such as grocery shopping or cleaning. Service and payment models vary quite a bit with CCRCs, though most operate on a rental basis.
Memory and Dementia Care
Seniors with dementia and memory disorders have a range of needs. Some may be able to care for themselves in a safe, supervised setting, while others need help with basic tasks. New Perspective’s memory care options provide residents with around-the-clock support, personalized care plans, numerous amenities, enjoyable activities and more.
In this calm, structured environment with familiar faces and a familiar routine, residents can live purposeful lives. Because some people with memory issues wander and may become lost, these communities are laid out to make navigation safe and easy. Less worry and frustration results in less agitation and more opportunities to feel productive and empowered.
Skilled nursing is designed for those who require post-hospital, post-surgical, or more complex around-the-clock nursing care. Supervision includes registered and licensed nurses as well as certified nursing assistants. Residents benefit from individual care plans and services such as housekeeping and laundry, transportation services and more. Social and recreational activities are often available. In addition, residents often have access to on-site physical, occupational and speech therapies.
Through Respite care, senior living communities offer family caregivers temporary relief from the demands of caregiving. These senior living communities vary greatly, catering to a range of people and conditions. Respite care is available as needed or on a recurring weekly or monthly basis. Some states offer grants to help caregivers afford respite care.
Lifestyle & Care Options Abound in Today’s Senior Living Communities.
With so many choices, you might want to get some advice from senior living professionals who can help you decide what type of senior living is right for you.
We invite you to visit a New Perspective Senior Living Community near you. Whether you’re looking for independent living, assisted living or memory care, we can help you make the choice that fits you and your family. Contact us today. Download our free “Complete Guide to Choosing Between Senior Living Options”.