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8 Signs It's Time for Assisted Living

Jun 3, 2016

8 Signs It's Time for Assisted Living

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Has mom been hesitant to walk up the stairs lately? Is dad having trouble making his own meals, and forgetting to take his medication? These things tend to coincide with the natural flow of aging, but they are also signs that it may be time to consider making the move to an assisted living community.

8 Signs it May Be Time for Assisted Living

Assisted living facilities offer independent seniors just enough help to let them continue living their lives to the fullest. Here are a few of the top signs it’s time for a senior to move into an assisted living facility.

1. Home Accidents

Has your loved one fallen lately, or do they express concerns of falling? Home accidents are a huge issue in the senior population, and can potentially be fatal. If you’re loved one seems concerned about stairs, detached rugs, or the amount of space to walk in a particular room, it may be time to consider an assisted living facility. 

2. Wandering

This is most prevalent in individuals that are suffering from dementia. While many people with mild dementia are capable of living on their own, those with worsening symptoms tend to wander at times. These individuals forget where they are going and why they left their home in the first place. Wandering can be extremely dangerous, so if you notice your loved one is wandering, it might be time for a new living arrangement. 

3. Personal Hygiene Issues

Have you noticed that your loved one doesn’t seem to be taking care of himself or herself? Whether you notice an odor suggesting that they aren’t showering, or messy clothing, or a general look of disarray, it may be time to consider an assisted living facility.

4. Medication Management

If a senior is prescribed a specific medication to take daily, and they’ve recently had any sort of mishap, it may be time to consider assisted living as an option. Medication mishaps can include forgetting to take the medication, taking the wrong medication, or being unable to remember whether or not you’ve already taken it that day. 

5. Changes in Eating Habits

Have you noticed that your loved one has lost or gained unnecessary weight? This may be a sign that they are not eating properly, which can greatly affect a senior’s health. Changes in eating habits may be a sign it’s time to move into assisted living.

6. New or Worsening Health Condition

There are some health conditions that seniors may have and they are still perfectly capable of living on their own. If you happen to notice a worsening condition, or your loved one expresses concerns about their health condition, it’s time to look into an assisted living facility. 

7. Money Management

One sign that it’s time to move into an assisted living facility is the lack of money management. You might notice that your loved one’s bills aren’t getting paid, despite the fact that they have plenty of money in their bank account. The senior could simply be forgetting to pay them, but this can harm their credit and more if it becomes habitual. 

8. Home Condition

Have you noticed that your loved one’s home has gone from being neat and tidy to cluttered and messy? If a senior allows the house to become too messy, it can become a health hazard. If your loved one has not been taking care of their home, it may be time to make the move to assisted living.

If your senior loved one is representing one or more of these signs, it could be time to make the move to an assisted living facility. If they truly do not wish to move into assisted living but are displaying these signs, it may be worth it to consider whether or not in home care is the right choice for your loved one.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the difference between home care and an assisted living facility?

There are several differences between home care and assisted living. Home care means hiring a trained professional to provide care right in your home, while assisted living involves moving to a community to receive similar care. The amount of assistance that home care provides depends on your senior's needs and can be tailored accordingly. Home care can range anywhere from weekly companionship and therapy to 24-hour skilled nursing care or even hospice. In contrast, assisted living provides seniors with an enriching community of their peers and medical attention as needed, making it a flexible option for many. 

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I was just told that my Dad is getting kicked out of assisted living. Is that possible?

Unfortunately, yes. Though it sounds awful, seniors can sometimes get kicked out of assisted living communities. Some of the reasons senior get kicked out are: endangering the health and safety of other residents or workers, breaking the rules, not paying the bill, or needing more healthcare than the community provides. However, most communities will provide residents with at least 30 days’ notice of eviction to allow families to plan around the situation. 

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