There’s no denying that moving from a home one has lived in for many years to an assisted living community is a big change. Often, our aging loved ones can come up with a variety of reasons why they should stay exactly where they are, despite the fact that they are starting to experience a decline in health, need more assistance with daily tasks, or are isolated and lonely.
Starting the conversation about moving to an assisted living community is often a challenge in itself. However, when you can clear up some of the common misconceptions loved ones have about this change in lifestyle, it’s easier to make it clear how much their overall quality of life will improve.
The Reality of Life in Assisted Living Communities
Choosing to move to an assisted living community is never a decision that is taken lightly. It takes time, research and often a great deal of convincing that moving is the right choice. However, residents can quickly adapt to this new way of living, enjoying all the benefits assisted living provides that make life easier.
Here are five of the most common misconceptions about assisted living communities:
Assisted living communities are full of people who are ill. Aging loved ones often picture the residents of assisted living communities as being feeble, old and sick. The variety of care options, health and wellness services and numerous amenities available actually improve their well-being! Also, assisted living residents generally need minimal medical care; assistance is there if and when they should need it, but most residents lead active, vibrant lives.
There’s no reason to move while you’re still healthy. Many seniors think that until a medical emergency or an extreme decline in health occurs, there’s no valid reason to consider moving to an assisted living community. However, if aging loved ones move while they are still active and healthy, it’s more likely they will stay that way for years to come. They’ll receive just the right amount of care they need in a safe, comfortable environment where help is always available.
Your every move will be watched. The thought of losing one’s independence is one of the most common fears about moving to an assisted living community. Fact: assisted living communities are designed specifically to promote an independent lifestyle. While participation in social activities and events is always encouraged, residents are not monitored or forced to do anything they are not interested in doing.
It’s far too expensive. Not being able to afford assisted living is another major concern many people have when they’re considering moving. However, it’s important to take all current monthly expenses and caregiving costs into account. Are loved ones paying for in-home care? Are they still paying a mortgage on a home? Will big ticket repairs on the home be needed in the near future? Is a family caregiver missing out on work due to providing daily care to a loved one? When all these costs are added up, assisted living communities often turn out to be an affordable option.
It won’t feel like home. Today’s assisted living communities allow residents to personalize their apartments with items from their homes to create a comfortable, familiar space. While it’s true that they’ll be downsizing to a smaller living area, residents can still recreate the feel of home by bringing favorite pieces of furniture, artwork and knick-knacks to decorate their new living space.