The ability to remain as safely independent for as long as possible could be a great definition of “healthy aging.”
But this does not mean that living alone, in one’s home without interaction, or any assistance is necessarily a “healthy” choice.
When thinking about “Independence,” it’s important to remember — we all need others.
If fear is ruling your day then you are far from “free”
Caregivers (either from an Agency or Private-Duty) come to the home to help with a large array of services. Some examples:
If the existing home is too large, on multiple levels, has bathrooms that need extensive retro-fitting, or is difficult to maintain, a move into a community may be a good option. Often a small, simpler environment that is built for “healthy aging” is easier to manage and generally safer. The added bonus of an easily-accessible neighborhood of new friends is also something very positive to consider.
Caregivers are allowed in Independent Living communities. These Caregivers are hired directly by Residents or Families.
Rather than one-size-fits-all Assisted Living services (which requires the community to be licensed by the state),
Independent Living can provide social opportunities, housekeeping and often, meal services, without the additional overhead costs
that accompany Assisted Living.
Because Caregivers can efficiently visit multiple Residents without travel time, often hourly minimums are waived. The overall cost (housing, food, amenities and care) may be significantly lower than in an Assisted Living environment. Note: Independent Living communities vary in services, packages and pricing. Hiring Caregivers also requires some management and oversight. There are companies that specialize in these types of programs.
From an apartment building (“+55”) that caters to older adults to golf-enriched, resort-style sprawling communities, there are many options when it comes to Independent Senior Living. It is probably a good idea to look for communities that offer choices for staying active, socially engaged and access to support services.
Independent Senior Living Communities are not licensed to provide care, however they do offer enhancements to day-to-day living that can reduce worry and enhance retirement. Dining plans are often included or offered at an additional cost. Some of these dining experiences are complete with beautifully appointed dining rooms, gourmet meals and room service.
These communities are generally large and offer Independent Living, Assisted Living, often Memory Care and Skilled/Nursing Care on campus. “Continuing Care” or “Aging in Place” might offer a couple or single older adult the options of never having to move again.
Similar to a golf membership, many require an upfront fee in addition to monthly rent.
Some Large Assisted Living Communities offer both Independent and Assisted Living apartments within the same building or on the same campus.