By 2035, the U.S. Census Bureau forecasts there will be about 78 million Americans aged 65 and beyond. What’s concerning for both seniors and their adult children is the prevalence of conditions affecting seniors than ever before, including Alzheimer’s Disease, diabetes, heart disease, and dementia.
The Alzheimer’s Association predicts about 7.7 million senior citizens could deal with the degenerative condition by 2030, for example.
That statistic is not meant to scare you.
It shows the growing need for the right, warm assisted living facilities that offer home-like, creative, and long-term care solutions for America’s most defining generation.
So, how do you choose among the more than 38,000 assisted living communities countrywide to find the best assisted living facility for you or your loved one right now or soon?
On top of financial considerations, it all comes down to these five crucial factors.
1. Prioritize care needs
You want an assisted living community that provides individualized physical, mental, medical, and social care.
For example, do you need medical care for a specific health condition? Look for a facility that’ll provide the healthcare you need within, nearby, or through regular or on-demand expert visits.
If you need assistance moving around, such as using a wheelchair, a facility that offers such an accessibility option in all its living areas is a good pick.
The community needs to help you feel at home, and your vital needs well-taken care of, not isolated at your time of need.
2. Foresee future needs, too
It is smart to consider the possibility that you’ll need more care services in the future. So, consider assisted living communities that offer transfer to advanced care services within.
Those can include advancing to long-term care and nursing home services within the community you’ve come to love.
3. Ask these vital questions
It is your life, so don’t be shy to ask:
- Are you free to receive visitors, and how regularly?
- What enriching activities do you offer?
- Which fitness activities can you look forward to?
- What sort of nutrition should you expect?
- Are there special wellness programs such as guided meditation, expert lectures, and hearing aids provision?
- Is the facility close enough to the people you want to visit or visiting you?
Have another burning question?
Don’t be afraid to ask.
4. Talk to your doctor
Your doctor’s advice is priceless here.
They know you best, medically.
So ask your doctor’s recommendation for the right combination of medical, mental, and social care you’ll need to continue leading a healthy life —both now and in the foreseeable future.
5. See if there are any complaints
Different states have limitations in place for how much assisted living care a facility can provide. As well, different states have varying regulations that guide the facilities within their borders.
Oregon, for example, strictly requires assisted living communities to reapply for a license every two years.
That means a facility has to ensure it follows and exceeds the local standards and regulations to stay in service. That is a good thing for you or your loved one because they’ll get the safety, security, nutrition, mental, and personalized care you need for aging gracefully.
6. Pick a homely facility that supports holistic living
Take a tour of the facility in person. Do you like the cleanliness, amenities, and cultural feel of the place?
Talk to the caregivers yourself. Do they seem genuinely kind and responsive? Also, note if a caregiver has been working at the facility for long. That could be a good indicator that the facility cares about the welfare of its caregivers.
Happy caregivers translate to enthusiastic, soulful interactions and care for you.
7. Choose facilities that work with a top assisted living builder
Baby Boomers are more tech-savvy than previous generations, for one. So facilities that collaborate with forward-thinking assisted living developers have more to offer now and into the future.
Think constructing facilities that support flawless movement, socializing, fulfilling privacy, and optimal safety. Also, consider well-integrated amenities such as Wi-Fi connectivity for staying in touch with loved ones online and monitoring health signals using digital health devices and apps.
Use these criteria to pick the best assisted living facility so you can deservedly enjoy your senior years. Over to you.