According to the Institute on Aging, almost two-thirds of adults 65-plus rely solely on family and friends to provide their long-term care needs.
But what about the other 35 percent?
When to Consider Assisted Living
Most seniors believe they can stay at home and take care of themselves for the rest of their lives. Many family members also believe they can provide their required care for as long as it takes.
However, you must consider what’s best for Mom or Dad, along with what’s best for your own family. The truth is, situations and circumstances change. Ask yourself if you could maintain care if your parent became ill, had a fall, needed a joint replacement, or experienced a more serious situation related to their health.
While you may not yet feel ready to make the decision, it’s never too early to begin the conversation on future care. Have you talked to your parents about it? A frank discussion about how they see their lives progressing in the months and years ahead may be enlightening.
Assisted Living - When is it Time?
Give yourself and your parents an honest assessment. Ask yourself the following questions to see if assisted living might be the right choice.
- Have you or your parents visited an assisted living community in recent years, so you know what they’re like? Do they already have friends in assisted living?
- Are your mom and dad getting the most out of life? Are they able to do all the things they want to?
- Are your parents still taking care of things like shopping, keeping the house clean and in good repair, doing the laundry, taking daily medications, and handling basic finances?
- Can he or she still drive – or have you discussed driving?
Based on your answers to these questions, you’ll have a better idea of what next steps you should take for your parents’ health and well-being.
If they’re struggling to live at home alone and missing out on activities they used to enjoy, it may be time to consider assisted living.
Feeling Guilty About Assisted Living
Sharing your worries with your parents and letting them know you are concerned for their well-being can make a difference. Few parents want to distress their families. You may be stunned when they say, “You’ve done so much, but we’ve been talking, and it’s time to think about a change.”
There are no easy decisions, but consider that modern assisted living communities provide bright, appealing living spaces and engaging activities.
Once they’re settled in, your parent will have an opportunity to participate in daily activities, be near others with similar interests, and broaden their network of friends. At the same time, all their medical needs will be looked after.
About Maine Veterans’ Homes
Life goes on with a full slate of activities and interactions at many assisted living communities today. And you’ll still be an active participant in your parents’ lives – without the stress and worry about their well-being all day, every day. Does assisted living at Maine Veterans' Homes sound like it might be the right fit? To learn more, download our Eligibility Guide >>>