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Pros/Cons of assisted living vs home care for senior citizens

Most senior citizens fear abandonment by their family at least on some level. Your parents probably spent the best years of their life looking after you and making sure that you get the best education, healthcare, and quality of life that they could offer.

Unfortunately, if you have a busy work schedule, devoting your personal time towards caring for your senior relatives is next to impossible. To ensure they are still safe, many people put their elderly family members into an assisted living setup or provide a home care attendant for them. Before making this decision, it is imperative to know how each of these options compare with the other.

Here are some pros and cons of assisted living and home care for senior citizens.

Assisted living

This residential setup provides senior citizens with customized and personalized care, such as bathroom use assistance, dressing and grooming assistance, management of medication intake, laundry services, daily meals provision, transportation services, social activities, and housekeeping among others.

Pros

  • No more lonely monotonous days

As one grows older, they get a lot of idle time because they aren’t occupied with work anymore and their children are away. Many senior citizens, therefore, can be prone to boredom and loneliness. Assisted living facilities will help keep your aging relatives busy with book clubs, tournaments of cards and poker, classes of art and music, and nights of watching classic old movies among other activities.

  • Assistance in daily activities

Unfortunately, senior citizens can find it harder to perform simple daily activities like using the bathroom as they age. Assisted living provides various services to enhance the quality of life for old people such as bathing, transportation, management of medication, dressing, and laundry.

  • Safety and security

Communities of assisted living offer safety and security to old people by giving the senior citizens emergency buttons that they can press in case of injuries, falls, or any other emergencies.

When natural disasters like earthquakes or floods occur, assisted living facilities are equipped to help senior citizens and keep them safe. Most facilities have smoke detectors and alarms for carbon monoxide as well as any other undetectable toxic substances. Assisted living institutions also have security cameras and services to keep the senior folks safe.

Cons

  • Costly

Assisted living institutions are definitely not cheap. You will have to spend significant amounts of money to ensure your loved one gets the best care available.

  • Adjustment troubles

Many elderly people have developed a fixed mindset and do not like change. As a result, they may struggle to adjust to the group setup and policies in assisted living facilities.

  • Medical attention

Assisted living institutions only provide basic care to old people. This means that they might not be able to take care of patients with serious medical conditions like Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Home care

This type of care for senior citizens allows them to remain at home with their loved ones. If you do not trust retirement homes or assisted living facilities, then home care is the best solution for your aged loved one. After all, home is always the best if you can do it.

Pros

  • Personalized care

Taking care of your old folks at home will enable them to communicate their needs to you freely or to the caregiver you have hired, thereby allowing them to get full attention to what they need. Getting specific care in an assisted living institution may be hard and home care provides the required attention to detail.

  • Peace of mind

Home care shows your older relatives that you love and care for them. Taking them to a retirement home or an assisted living institution may leave some people with feelings of bitterness, hopelessness, and in extreme cases – depression. With home care. you also get to follow up easily on their progress, which ensures you have a peace of mind.

  • Independence

Older people are more likely to grow in confidence and independence when taken care of by their loved ones at home, as compared in an institution for groups of people where they may feel helpless and vulnerable.

Cons

  • Responsibilities

Having a senior citizen in your home requires the attention and focus from you to take good care of them. This adds to your list of responsibilities and might be too much for you, especially if you have children. Knowing your limits is always a recommended approach.

  • Privacy

Simply put – if your parents are staying with you, this translates less moments of privacy for you and your family.

  • Renovations

You may need to adjust your home in order to create more space and a safer environment to suit the needs of your aging parent or friend. This may include installing a wheel chair ramp, lowering the countertop, and roughening up smooth floors. There are companies that specialize in this type of buildout work, and are a great resource if it becomes necessary.

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