If you bring up assisted living to a loved one, you may be met with forceful rejection.
Change is scary after all, especially when you have to leave home. It’s scary even if you’re just searching for “assisted living near me.”
However, many seniors picture the idea of nursing homes, which is different from assisted living. Assisted living is for seniors who need a little (or a lot) extra help in their daily lives.
Assisted Living Explained
What is assisted living? Well, it’s the only the fastest-growing long term care option in America!
According to the Assisted Living Federation of America, in 2009, there were 36,000 assisted living facilities serving 1 million seniors.
Assisted living can allow seniors to live full and happy lives while assuring family members that their loved one is being taken care of.
While assisted living facilities services can vary greatly, the amenities make up the best part of assisted living.
These 8 amenities can make a massive difference in the life of a senior.
- Physical Therapy
The main reasons for a senior to choose assisted living are to ensure safety, physical health and mental health are taken care of. The degree to which this is done varies. Most facilities, however, offer help with dressing and bathing and physical therapy.
- Medicine Assistance
Many facilities offer on-site medicine management and assistance. This is reassuring to loved ones. They will know that medicines will be given on time and schedule.
Medication management is also a valuable amenity. What this means is that medicines will be managed in coordination with doctors, so that there will not be any adverse effects from the interactions between different medications.
- 24-7 Security
A crucial part of safety is ADA compliance. The standards set by the ADA should be followed in the facility and its different rooms.
Even if you read through these standards and find that some of them aren’t needed for you right now, don’t count them out. In the future, you may need them.
Another aspect of safety is having the peace of mind that you’re safe. This includes having access to buttons for quick assistance as well as 24-hour security.
- Continuing Care
There are many “all in one” facilities around the country that hold a philosophy of continuing care for all residents. Continuing care means that some residents might start in independent living apartments, and as their needs change, they can move on to assisted living or nursing care areas.
- Personalized Choices
If you have any particular preferences, you’ll want to find a facility that offers a higher degree of personalization.
Here are a few common examples:
Many seniors have specific preferences for room temperature. Personalized air conditioning and heating would be a desirable amenity for those seniors.
The next one is food. Most facilities provide three meals a day, family-style. This might include meat and potatoes for dinner. Other facilities might offer more of a gourmet dining experience.
If you desire more variety or quality in your diet, you’ll want to look for a facility that allows you to select between different meal plans. Some facilities will even let you submit your meal plan!
Finally, for those times when you might crave a late-night or late afternoon bite to eat, you’ll appreciate having access to 24-hour cafes.
It’s also worth inquiring about whether the café will keep in stock the snacks and drinks that the residents would prefer.
- Quality of Life Amenities
Here’s a list of the essential amenities for making residents feel happy and pampered.
- Do you hate doing laundry? Well, many assisted living facilities will lift this burden off your shoulders. They will also clean your linens and do the housekeeping.
- On-site beauty shops and barbershops can offer the following:
- har washing and styling
- makeup application
- In house massage therapists can provide stress-reducing massages that will relax you and help promote agility.
- For those seniors who still drive, heated underground parking that will keep you warm and safe as you come and go is also desirable.
- Most facilities offer private meeting/dining rooms for when you want to meet friends or family on special occasions such as birthdays or holidays.
- Body and Mind Care
The best-assisted living facilities offer comprehensive care. This means both body and mind.
For the body, look out for facilities with fitness rooms and personal trainers. For relaxation after workouts, lookout for heated pools and therapy pools.
For the mind, there should be libraries and computer rooms available.
For more severe issues, including memory issues (typically experienced by those with Alzheimer’s), memory care should be available as well.
Memory care is sometimes developed in conjunction with the Alzheimer’s Association. These memory care specialists will deliver care to ensure that seniors with Alzheimer’s feel happy, dignified, accomplished, and maintain normal behavior despite their memory being compromised.
Another aspect of mental health for many seniors is having access to the outdoors. The outdoor part of facilities should be both beautiful and end enclosed, ensuring that seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia won’t accidentally wander somewhere they shouldn’t.
- Fun Amenities
Life shouldn’t be just a struggle to get by especially in the golden years. Assisted living facilities recognize this and provide lots of opportunities for having fun.
A standard amenity is game parlors, where residents can meet to play card games and board games.
You should also check if the facility has on-site coordinators. They can arrange for special guest appearances such as musicians, magicians, and more. They work with senior activity professionals, who will help to ensure that each senior is engaged with fun activities.
Some facilities also have classes and rooms for specific hobbies like art and music. If the facility is top-notch, they may include movie theaters or stages for music and theater lovers as well.
And we can’t forget golf lovers – some facilities even have putting greens on the grounds as well.
Another essential amenity for pet lovers is pet-friendly rooms. You don’t necessarily have to leave your four-legged friends behind when you choose assisted living!
If you were searching for “assisted living near me” and found this blog post, then consider making Heritage Woods the place for you or your loved one to spend the golden years at. Contact us here for more information.