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Modern Living Choices for Seniors
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Our communities are an integral part of our happiness. As we get older our needs change, and that can mean updating our living situation. However, our lives are so much richer if we stay connected to our community.
Living options for seniors have become diverse in recent years. The key to a positive lifestyle transition is to ask yourself:
- What is inconvenient about living in my current home?
- How do I like to spend my time?
Answering these questions honestly should clarify the living arrangement that will enhance your life, and make you feel more relaxed and safe.
Here is an updated look at the different living options now available for seniors:
1. Home Care in Your Own Home
Many seniors prefer to stay in their own home. If you are self-sufficient and able to manage health issues with little or no help, a few minor tweaks may be all you need.
For example, home healthcare practitioners can come straight to your door. A major benefit is that you are not responsible for getting yourself to these appointments, plus you get the convenience and privacy of your own space. Home healthcare workers can assist with manageable chronic illnesses, as well as short term support, such as helping you recover from surgery or an injury.
If climbing stairs is difficult, wheelchair ramps and stair-lifts can be a great value-add to your home, and quick to install. Investing in these home improvements can add a level of ease to your life, and make your home much more livable.
Another good option is downsizing to a smaller home. This can also help if stair-climbing is becoming tricky, or if you would benefit from living closer to family.
We know many seniors prefer to live in their own home, and with so many options, there is no reason not to make it as comfortable as possible.
2. Active Adult Living Communities
A great alternative to living in a family home is to lease or purchase a home in an active adult living community. These communities offer several advantages over a traditional home for self-sufficient and independent seniors.
For example, such communities are generally for ages 55+ which creates opportunities for friendships with other people of retirement age. The community may be gated, and will generally have lifestyle amenities like a pool, a clubhouse, a golf course, and fitness centre. It may even have support services like emergency care staff. Maintenance for neighbourhood amenities is taken care of and can include tasks such as lawn mowing and snow shovelling.
3. Independent Living
Independent living is another good option for seniors who are independent but would like to some more household chores taken off their plate. Retirement apartments and residences are the classic option in this category.
Independent living facilities generally provide weekly housekeeping and a laundry service – although you can still do your own laundry if you prefer – as well as quality meal service options. Another convenience is transportation to community events and grocery shopping support. Small pets are generally welcome in retirement apartments including cats and dogs. As an extra level of security, on-site staff are available In case of emergency.
Independent living is increasingly popular for seniors in Canada and there are community-based residences as well as established brands. At all levels, from safety support to the opportunity to dine with new friends, community is a powerful benefit of the independent living option.
4. Assisted Living
Assisted living best serves seniors with physical or cognitive health limitations who need support with personal care, mobility, or medication management.
The staff at an assisted living community will take care of chores and support on a daily basis, and many have Personal Support Workers on site. Full-time support is provided to residents via an in-room call bell or emergency phone.
Many private companies offer assisted living options, as well as some not-for-profits. The latter can provide a strong community connections for seniors, especially those supported by their local church or religious organization.
5. Long-Term Care
Long-term care homes include complete nursing and personal care support for residents. Residents are individuals at any life stage who will benefit from care in all aspects of their life, from personal hygiene to healthcare.
Long-term care facilities are best suited for seniors with serious physical or cognitive issues who require 24/7 care. The government subsidizes long-term care facilities in Canada, ensuring this essential care is available to anyone who needs it.
As we age, our lifestyle evolves with us. Whether you require minor tweaks and conveniences in your own home, or if assisted living would bring the greatest relief, you deserve to receive the support that is right for you. Looking at the variety of living options for seniors and considering where your life could be improved is a smart decision, and will greatly improve your quality of life.