When most people think of assisted living facilities, they think of bleak places where the elderly go to live out the rest of their days. However, for many of the more than 800,000 residents of assisted living homes, this isn’t the case at all.
The right assisted living facility allows seniors to maintain some independence while staying safe, giving both you and them peace of mind. But how do you know when someone can no longer live on their own? What are the signs to look out for?
Keep reading to learn about seven signs that can help you know when it’s time to move someone you love into an assisted living facility.
1. There’s a High Risk of Falls or Injuries
The National Council on Aging reports one out of every four Americans older than 65 falls each year. This makes falls the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries.
If you notice that your loved one begins to fall more often than they used to, it might be time to consider an assisted living home. There, they’ll have access to around the clock supervision and checkups. This can help reduce the severity of falls, or prevent them in the first place.
You should also consider the home that your loved one lives in. If it isn’t accessible, an assisted living home might make things easier for them.
2. Simple Tasks Are Harder Than Before
When most people are young, they take the ability to complete simple actions for granted. However, things such as doing the laundry, getting the mail, and cleaning the house can be challenging and painful for older people.
Likewise, if your loved one still drives a car, make sure you feel comfortable about that. If you feel that they are starting to lack the mental and physical abilities needed to operate a vehicle, they may need some help.
3. Their General Health Has Declined
Changes in health may prove too much for you and your other family members or friends to handle. You may not have time to take them to the doctor or check up on them each day. In that case, consider choosing assisted living to help give you peace of mind.
4. Financial Difficulties
Aside from struggling with simple tasks, older people may also find it difficult to keep track of their finances. This can lead them into sticky financial situations, whether that means forgetting to pay the bills, not wanting to, or being unable to do so.
Another unfortunate reality is that scammers and fraudsters understand that seniors are more susceptible to falling for cons. This can lead your loved one into scams that can wreck their finances. These can happen over the internet, the phone, or in person, making them difficult to prevent.
If you notice that your loved one hasn’t paid their bills or has begun to have any other financial difficulties, consider that it may be time for things to be simpler in an assisted living home.
5. Weight Loss
Problems with performing ordinary tasks can extend into the kitchen, as well. Weight loss can be a sign that your loved one is having difficult cooking. It can also mean that they are losing their appetite, which can indicate a number of other issues.
One of the best parts about assisted living homes is that they prepare all of the meals that your loved one eats. These meals contain the vitamins and nutrients they need to stay healthy.
Staff at assisted living facilities will also monitor your loved one to make sure that they’re eating the required amount of food. If they begin to not eat, they’ll let you know and do their best to figure out the reason.
6. Messy Appearance and Home
Aside from maintaining a healthy and consistent weight, you should also pay attention to the appearance of your loved one as they get older. Do they look clean and groomed? Have they bathed recently?
When elderly people don’t take care of their appearance, it may be a sign of a problem. They may be unable to bathe themselves, or not have the mental or physical capacity to do laundry.
Failure to take medication can also lead to issues, and it’s something that older people often forget to do. Senior assisted living facilities will make sure residents look and feel their best, helping them when necessary. They’ll also ensure that they take any prescribed medication.
7. Feelings of Isolation
One common issue that plagues older people is a sense of isolation. When people live alone, they have less of a reason to leave the house. This can limit their opportunities for social interactions, and lead to other issues, such as depression.
In an assisted living facility, seniors have the chance to interact with other seniors, as well as attendants and nurses. Aside from chatting with other people, they can also partake in activities together, such as game nights and events.
When Is It Time for an Assisted Living Facility? This Guide Should Help
Watching an elderly loved one’s health and life decline can be tragic. When that starts to happen, sometimes the best thing for them is to live in an assisted living facility. There, they’ll have access to around the clock care, as well as plenty of interaction with other older people.