Do you have loved ones that you are caring for and you are beginning to feel burnt out and stressed or is providing care is more than you can handle, then maybe it’s time to consider an assisted living facility.
What is assisted living?
Assisted living is a facility that provides seniors with assistance while allowing them to maintain as much privacy and independence as possible.
There are different names that are used to describe assisted living facility it can be described as an assisted living residence or assisted living community.
But whatever its called these facilities provides care and assistance with their daily task like assisting to bathe, dress, a reminder to take medications and whatever ADL they may need.
According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Administration on Aging, by the year 2030, it is estimated that there will be 72.1 million Americans over age 65.
As people are living longer and enjoy better health and more active lifestyles, they prefer to live in an assisted living environment as to being confined to a nursing home just because they need some assistance with the activities of daily living.
They are choosing to live in residences that offer both, necessary care with independent living.
Assisted Living Residences
The current generation of seniors are living longer than ever before, and today’s assisted living residences are geared towards seniors who wish to remain as independent for as long as possible.
These assisted living residences are proactive in providing health care to residents as their needs require.
The emphasis is on prevention, so wellness and exercise programs serve to keep residents healthy.
Residents are free to be out and about, going to events or walking the grounds or surrounding neighborhood, while those with more debilitating mental or physical conditions are provided a safe escort on group outings.
Residents in assisted living generally have their own space with a great deal of privacy. In many cases, they are encouraged to bring their own furniture and belongings, so they can have the familiar feeling of their home
Some seniors do experience depression living alone in their homes with living with other seniors in an assisted living environment offers a variety of activities to stimulate physical and cognitive function.
Being around other seniors can lessen depression, which is known to cause significant cognitive declines.
So if you are a concerned caregiver you can see that living in an assisted living residence is not a bad option.
There are certain things that can signal that it may be time to place your loved one in an assisted living facility for your and theirs well being.
5 Signs It’s Time for Assisted Living
All of us would like to live independently in our own homes and care for ourselves, but the reality is for some of us this is not possible.
It is noted that approximately 70% of every senior 65 and up should expect to need at least a couple of years of long-term care, probably in an assisted living or nursing home.
This time when it does come will not be an easy decision for them to make, But for their safety, the decision has to be made, for many seniors there comes to a point where living on their own simply isn’t safe anymore.
When they cannot take proper care of themselves anymore then its time to consider other options than living alone.
1. Difficulty with basic tasks
Doing daily tasks, like moving, it may become too painful to move due to arthritis, keeping the surroundings clean, or doing simple chores.
2. Frequent injuries (even if minor)
It is reported that 2.5 million seniors are treated every year for injuries related to falls and in many cases the damage is serious.
Minor injuries can also become a much bigger deal the older you get and if they are occurring often then it’s likely they need more day-to-day help.
3. Significant weight loss
Losing a significant amount f weight could be an indication that your loved one isn’t eating properly, they are not maintaining a healthy diet. it could be because they’re having a hard time cooking their meals, or they have a loss of appetite symptomatic of some larger problem.
This is another indication that closer monitoring is needed and a workable option needs to be implemented.
4. A tendency toward isolation
Loneliness can be as bad for a senior’s health as an illness. It is good that they are involved with others their age and remain active, living somewhere where they can tap into a community without leaving could be good.
An assisted living home may mean less independence, but the other there is access to a whole new social community.
There are many assisted living facilities, take time to find the home that best meets your loved one’s needs, the move is about their safety and your peace of
For Dementia and Alzheimer’s Patients
According to Rita Vasquez, M.A., a Marriage and Family Clinician, and Therapist at Quail Lakes Counseling Center in Stockton, California. Has given us some telltale signs to look for that will help you recognize when it’s the right time for assisted living, says
These signs include:
Physical, sexual or violent aggression frequently happens in people with dementia, and caregivers or other family members may begin to feel resentful or stressed. “I tell people when they’re getting to that state, it’s time to start considering placement,” says Vasquez.
2. Caregiver stress.
Caregiver symptoms like increased stress can be just as telling a sign as the dementia behaviors described above.
3. Escalating care needs.
Ask yourself: “Are the person’s care needs beyond my physical abilities?” or “Is the health of the person with dementia or my health as a caregiver at risk?” If you’re answering yes to those questions, it might be time to have that tough family conversation.
4. Home safety.
Consider your senior loved one’s health and your own abilities to care for them. Is the person with dementia unsafe in their current home?
“Sundowners syndrome” — very agitated behavior that becomes more pronounced later in the day — is a common characteristic of those with dementia. Vasquez says that this can take a heavy toll on caregivers and when it begins to severely disrupt family routines, this may be a sign that the caregiving burden is too difficult to handle.
In later stages of dementia, the risk posed by wandering becomes much greater, notes Vasquez. “They can wander even if you just take the time to go to the bathroom,” she says, and the probability of falls and injuries increases as well.
Caregiver Stress May Indicate a Need for Help
Caring for someone you love can lead to a lot of extra stress in your life. Although you have responsibilities to your loved one, it’s especially important for you to remember not to neglect yourself.
You must remember that stress can lead to depression If left unchecked. It is noted that many caregivers show signs of clinical depression and caregivers are taking more prescription, especially for anxiety and depression.
The psychological costs of caregiving and of making difficult care decisions are now being likened to the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Caregivers may experience symptoms like:
- Avoidance behaviors
- Disabling anxiety
- Intrusive thoughts and more
Deciding between assisted living and in-home care is never easy, and caregiver grief and guilt are common reactions to moving seniors out of their homes.
Caregivers may wonder if they could or should have done more; they may feel separation anxiety in moving their loved one to another location.
The best way to be there for them is to know that they are in the proper place to get the care that they need. Visit communities before choosing one, and make sure they have activities and medical support
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