Posted: October 5, 2020
There are several signs that it may be time to discuss assisted living with your loved one. These conversations should take place over time, starting before a crisis, as this decision takes time and sensitivity.
There are physical, cognitive, and financial signs that indicate it’s time to consider assisted living.
One of the physical signs that it could be time for assisted living is that someone is struggling with mobility issues. Are they having difficulty rising from a seated position? Are they unsteady on their feet? Have they fallen? Other physical clues include inadequate nutrition or poor hygiene.
Cognitive indicators that something is amiss may include missed appointments, forgetfulness, or depression. Signals of depression may include a lack of desire to do things or withdrawing from family, friends, hobbies, or interests.
When financial tasks become overwhelming, bills may not be on time and creditor notices may start piling up. Falling victim to a scam could indicate it may be time for assisted living.
Medical issues and a reduction in social activities are other red flags.
According to LaChele Henkle Weaver, president and CEO at Luminary Healthcare Companies, LLC, when the signs are there, it’s important to take steps to introduce the subject of assisted living in the right way. She says to set a time when there won’t be any distractions, avoid stressful situations, and keep the conversation positive and productive. She suggests inviting decision-makers to the meeting.
In that first discussion about assisted living, Henkle Weaver says you can ask your loved one to describe what they perceive as “a quality of life” and compare how different it is from their current situation. You don’t have to go it alone. It’s helpful to engage with others, like their doctors, peers, or extended family members who have experience with the benefits of assisted living.
By partnering with your loved one, you can help them make their own decision. For example, ask if they would like you to help research or schedule tours at assisted living communities.
When it’s time to find an assisted living community, consider things like the amount of support that is available. For many seniors, it’s important to have certified nursing staff and 24-hour team member response in case of emergency. Are the buildings constructed to maximize mobility by providing wide doorways, motion-activated entries and exits, and walk-in showers? Look for a place that is clean, well-maintained, and fresh smelling. Once you’ve determined a community will meet basic needs, dive deeper to find the right community culture by taking time to thoroughly research it.
In the best communities, residents are actively engaged in their lives and they’re able to make their own choices about things like food menus, programs, and community life. Ask for references so you can speak to families who have been where you are now and can help you understand how they made their choice.
Located a short distance south of downtown Indianapolis, Demaree Crossing in Greenwood, Indiana, is a senior living community that provides residents with a personalized approach to care and encourages the highest level of independence possible.
Amenities include a life enrichment team that designs activities to encourage connections, choice of four floor plans (including studio, studio deluxe, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom), shuttle service, and a restaurant-style dining room. On-site are a courtyard, movie theater, billiard room, gym, and library.
Assisted living allows residents to remain as independent as possible, while care staff is available 24/7 if needed to assist with things like bathing, dressing, grooming, and managing medications. Demaree Crossing residents enjoy spacious, low-maintenance senior apartments.