Understanding Senior Living Options
Assisted Living Center, Nursing Home or Residential Care Home: Which One Meets Your Needs?
When you are confronted with the question of senior care for your loved one, the many options available can be downright daunting. Understanding the basic differences between these different types of facilities can ease the confusion and help you make the best decision.
What is an Assisted Living Center?
An assisted living facility offers special housing for elders, as well as support services. These services
usually include assistance with day-to- day activities, such as bathing, dressing, grooming, and the like.
Meals are often provided in a cafeteria-style atmosphere, and regular activities are scheduled for those residents who might like to attend. Very basic health care, such as reminders to take medication, might be offered. Most assisted living centers will have anywhere from 30 to 100+ residents.
What is a Nursing Home?
A nursing home is also known as a skilled nursing facility. Seniors in nursing homes receive assistance related to day-to- day activities, but they are also monitored by a round-the- clock nursing staff. Patients in nursing homes often have chronic medical conditions and require daily medical services, but not the acute care offered by a hospital.
What is a Residential Care Home?
Residential Care Homes are traditional looking homes, typically nestled in the middle of a residential neighborhood. Seniors in a care home obtain services for all activities of daily living that they need including bathing, grooming, dressing, incontinent care, transferring, feeding assistance, etc. Activities are catered to best fit the residents at the home. Most residential care homes have between 3 and 8 elders per home.
Understanding the Difference
If your loved one is determined to maintain their independence, and they only have minor issues of aging to contend with, an assisted living facility might be your best option. If your elderly loved one has significant medical problems that require regular monitoring, or mental or emotional issues that need constant attention, a skilled nursing facility could be a good fit. Residential Care Homes tend to cater to those with slight to moderate memory issues or those that require assistance with most of their activities of daily living. Because of the smaller number of seniors living together, the staff is able to develop and carryout a customized care plan for each resident.