Choosing Between Assisted Living and Independent Living
A search for the best retirement housing begins with learning the definition of senior living options available to you – and there are many! Two of the most popular housing options for seniors are assisted living and independent living. Because they host separate types of individuals, you’ll discover that the lists of services and amenities vary accordingly, too.
When considering a Central Texas senior living community, it is important to ask these questions:
- What are the differences between assisted living and independent living?
- How are assisted living and independent living communities similar?
- What are the senior’s needs, and which type of community matches the required level of care?
Let’s compare assisted living vs. independent living now, so that you can start looking for the ideal accommodations to meet your expectations, both today and tomorrow.
Assisted Living and Independent Living: Here’s the Biggest Difference
As the name implies, “assisted living” supports those individuals who require frequent assistance with activities of daily living. Enhancing this type of hands-on care, assisted living communities also provide great chances for residents to stay as self-sufficient, healthy and active as they can, as well as to socialize with others – a vital necessity as we all grow older.
In comparison, “independent living” is designed for seniors who are able to still live mostly independently, without much support. Although some helpful conveniences and care might be possible, independent living communities usually, mainly focus on offering social surroundings and events for their residents.
Read on for some other ways that independent living and assisted living differ.
For those who struggle with tasks throughout the day, inside and outside of the home, the maintenance-free, relaxed lifestyle of assisted living brings peace of mind. The best assisted living communities in Central Texas ensure that residents continue to enjoy their favorite people, places and pastimes, while staying in an excellent senior housing location, like Hewitt, Belton or Copperas Cove.
Additionally, a trained staff promises a safe environment and around-the-clock aid with an array of daily tasks, which should encompass:
- Getting in to and out of bed.
- Completing hygiene tasks, such as using the restroom, bathing, dressing and grooming,
- Preparing, serving and eating nutritious meals.
- Managing medications and administering them safely, and on schedule.
- Cleaning the senior’s home and handling chores and maintenance.
- Driving to or coordinating transportation for medical appointments, errands, shopping, faith services, etc.
- Processing bills and administering personal finances.
Often, the monthly rental of a Texas assisted living apartment includes the streamlined costs of housekeeping, laundry and maintenance services, as well as meals, utilities and transportation.
Moreover, residents usually benefit from numerous community amenities onsite and a stimulating calendar of activities, events and planned offsite outings.
Perhaps best of all, high-quality assisted living communities create plentiful opportunities – every single day – for essential social interaction and engagement, with each other, staff members and visiting family and friends.
In contrast to assisted living, the independent living option might be preferable for more self-sufficient seniors who can perform those activities of daily living with minimal assistance. Independent living residents typically experience a secure home setting, along with built-in support that’s meant to eliminate the many hassles of home ownership.
Independent living communities sometimes provide hospitality-based services, such as dining, housekeeping, laundry and onsite amenities and activities, plus access to medical care and more. However, they may or may not be included in the monthly rental.
Should I Pick Assisted Living or Independent Living?
If you’re asking yourself that question, in the end, the choice between assisted living and independent living must be resolved by taking all of the senior’s requirements and preferences into consideration. Maybe most importantly, you’ll want to remember to anticipate possible needs in the near future. Because while he or she may not require much help, and independent living might seem to be the perfect fit at the moment, an aging person’s situation and struggles can change rapidly – even day to day.
Reflect on that extra level of support delivered by an assisted living community, which guarantees ready, helping hands at all times, as well as added reassurance. Plus, assisted living communities enable its residents to age in place. Rather than being forced to move again someday soon, the senior will receive an evolving level of care – while continuing to thrive among friends and a trusted staff.
In fact, some assisted living communities in Central Texas also offer memory care. This specialized type of senior living community is designed for individuals experiencing Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other forms of memory loss. Seniors who encounter these challenges benefit from professional, skilled support and compassionate, 24/7 supervision, so they can stay safer and healthier. A senior living community that features both assisted living and memory care could be a smart option, because if the need arises, the individual will be allowed to remain in the same trusted, familiar and comfortable housing.
As you research your senior living options, be sure to tour the communities you prefer, in person. Talk to both staff members and residents to better understand what to expect. Ask which services are included in the monthly rental, and which are charged at an additional cost. By examining all of the information in closer detail, you’re certain to find the new, delightful home that measures up to your every request.
Learn More from a Central Texas Senior Living Leader
Whether for yourself or for a loved one, trust Stoney Brook – an expert in assisted living and memory care – to help you navigate this next chapter. Our free, insightful resources reveal how to age well, at home or in a residential community. Subscribe to our blog now, and download our valuable eBooks.