What Is Assisted Living?
Just a few decades ago, there were very few options for support and care for older adults in need of assistance. As the years have passed and the need has increased, seniors and their families now have many choices to help them on their aging journey. And, while having choices is much better than the alternative, it does require seniors and their families to understand the choices, navigate their options and hopefully pick the best fit for their needs.
Today, assisted living is the most popular and fastest growing form of senior care. In fact, more than 800,000 older Americans currently reside in an assisted living community. And, with the population of seniors over the age of 85 expected to double by 2036, and triple by 2049, it is expected that seven out of 10 Americans will require assisted living care in their lifetime.
For seniors and their families who are facing questions about the future, who want more daily support or who are confused by the available alternatives, it helps to understand what assisted living is, what assisted living provides and to whom assisted living care is available.
What is Assisted Living?
Assisted living focuses on the individual needs and preferences of residents and encourages family members to participate in the lives of their loved ones. While assisted living communities do offer 24-hour-a-day care, most residents in assisted living do not require an intrusive level of daily support. Most seniors in assisted living can participate in daily activities on their own, but they may no longer be comfortable living completely independently. Residents in assisted living usually have their own living space and socialize with other residents throughout the day and during organized activities. Meals are provided daily to assisted living residents; however, some communities also offer personal kitchens.
So, if there is help available, but assisted living residents are largely independent and active, how does a family know when it is time to move a loved one to assisted living? There are a number of signs that assisted living may be the right choice. It may be time for assisted living if the senior:
- Requires support with one or more of the activities of daily living
- Needs help remembering to take medication or managing how much medication to take
- Lives in isolation or is pulling back from social gatherings
- Has difficulty completing home maintenance tasks, such as cleaning the house or mowing the lawn, or maintaining a clean living space
- Lacks interest or motivation in maintaining a healthy, nutritious daily diet
- Has no plan for future support
- Demonstrates noticeable changes in behavior or temperament
- A health care professional has recommended a higher level of support
Why Choose Assisted Living?
While each senior assisted living facility may offer different services and amenities, these are some of the types of assistance an assisted living facility is likely to provide:
- 24-hour security
- Help with bathing, dressing, toileting and other activities of daily living
- Mobility help
- Medication management
- Regular meals
- Help with making phone calls
- Laundry and housekeeping
- Hairdressing and barbering
- Exercise and recreation support
- Medical assistance when needed
Often, family members, friends and even family caregivers can find it physically difficult to help their loved ones with these tasks or cannot provide the level of availability elderly parents need. In some cases, a spouse may not have the necessary physical strength, or the person needing care may live at a distance from relatives and prefer not to move to a new part of the country. Trained helpers provide these services in assisted living facilities.
Sometimes physical strength and ability is not the primary concern. For example, an elderly relative may have trouble remembering to take needed medications. Some older people lose interest in meals and don’t take the trouble to cook for themselves, endangering their health. Others may forget to turn off the stove or may stop getting a healthy amount of exercise because they’re nervous about injuries. Assisted living provides a practical solution in all these situations. Assisted living facilities allow seniors to continue their unique lifestyles, making their own decisions and maintaining their independence while receiving the support and care they need.
Tutera Senior Living & Health Care’s assisted living facilities offer independence and freedom of choice to individuals who need support in their daily lives. Seniors at Tutera communities have a wide variety of choices to fill their days with healthy activities – from art studios to movie nights and water aerobics – as well as enjoyable social time and nutritious, delicious dining. As you can see below, everyone can build a life they love!
The goal at Tutera Senior Living’s assisted living communities is to create a unique experience for each resident. When a new resident moves into a Tutera community, the EmpowerMe Wellness program integrates the resident’s emotional, intellectual and physical needs. A care plan is created for each resident, and our compassionate, expertly trained team delivers one-on-one therapy services to help them reach their goals. In addition to daily comfort, entertainment and support, the EmpowerMe Wellness program includes:
- Physical therapy to assist residents in recovering from surgery, illness or injury that impacts strength, ambulation, pain management or fall risk
- Occupational therapy to regain and maintain the ability to complete activities of daily living, such as dressing, bathing, toileting or writing
- Speech therapy to support the recovery of strokes and other conditions that affect the voice, language, eating, swallowing, etc.
- Personal training in small groups or on an individual basis
About Tutera Senior Living & Health Care
Looking to establish a lifestyle unique to you for your retirement? Look no further than Tutera Senior Living & Health Care! Tutera Senior Living is a respected, multistate system of communities delivering healthy living choices and clinical services to thousands of seniors and their families. We offer numerous senior living communities with options for independent living, assisted living, memory care, rehabilitation and extended stay, respite programs and home health care.
At Tutera communities, we get to know our residents individually. Through our YOUNITE survey, we learn as much information as we can about each resident so that we are able to personalize their care and ensure their needs are met in a style that suits them.
Plan for your retirement today. Contact us to learn more about what Tutera can offer you or your loved ones.