How to Choose an Assisted Living Facility for Your Aging Parents
There are more than 39 million people in the United States over the age of 65. Of that number, 5.6 million are over the age of 85.
As our parents’ generation grows older, they are beginning to require the care of an (ALF) Assisted Living Facility.
Whether your parent requires medical care around the clock or just needs help with tasks like cooking and cleaning, assisted living facilities to offer a safe, healthy place for them to live.
But finding the right assisted living facility for a loved one can feel impossible. With so many options out there, narrowing them down can be a lengthy, confusing process.
If you need to choose an assisted living facility for your parent, keep reading. We’re breaking down the steps you need to take to ensure that you make a smart, informed decision.
Find a Facility That Can Provide the Right Care
Not all assisted living facilities are created equal. Instead, each provides a certain level of care to fit the specific needs of its patients.
Take for instance a patient that needs only minimal help to complete day-to-day tasks, and does not require around-the-clock medical care. In this case, an assisted living facility that provides freedom to patients while still offering care as needed is a good choice.
A facility designed for patients who need constant care from doctors and nurses would not only be unnecessary but could actually be worse for your parent. They may feel trapped and controlled, even though they still feel able to care for themselves most of the time.
If your parent does need constant medical care for any kind of condition, you need to find a facility equipped to care for him or her properly.
Look for Plenty of Activities
Even if your parent is able to leave the assisted living facility often on their own, they are going to be spending a lot of time there.
You want to make sure that any senior housing option you consider offers plenty of daily activities and services to keep your parent happy, healthy, and engaged.
If your parent is more than capable of getting around on his or her own, you won’t need the same kind of activities that a nursing home might offer.
Rather than physical fitness classes or daily shows, you might instead look for opportunities for social interaction.
Keep in mind that your parent may be relocating from a house and a neighborhood he or she has lived in for decades. They may have had close friends who could also be soon moving to assisted living facilities or otherwise be unable to visit.
Having the opportunity to engage in structured events at the assisted living facility is a great way for your parent to adjust to their new home and begin making new friends.
Consider the Location
Choosing the right assisted living facility is tough. Choosing a facility that is both perfect for your parent and close enough to you and any other family you’re close to is even worse.
Finding a balance between choosing a facility that has all of the amenities you’re looking for, and one that is close enough for you and other family members to visit as often as you’d like can be a challenge.
It’s a good idea to talk to your family about the distance challenge first. Come to an agreement about what the furthest distance you would all be comfortable with is.
Then, search for assisted living facilities within that area that meet any other criteria you have.
If you can’t find a facility within that area, you can then go back to the start of your research and talk to your other family members about your options.
Know Your Budget
Perhaps the most daunting part of choosing the right place for your parent to live is considering the assisted living cost.
The cost of assisted living facilities varies widely. Facilities that are nicer, with larger homes or rooms, more activities, and amenities, and other perks will obviously be more expensive than lower end options.
Even the state that the facility is located in can have an effect on the cost.
The average costs of assisted living facilities range anywhere from $30,000 a year to nearly $70,000 a year.
Before you start contacting or visiting potential assisted living facilities, you need to be clear about your budget.
Schedule a Visit
It can be tough to get a good feel for an assisted living facility by looking only at pictures and information online.
The best way to ensure you’re choosing the right place for your parent is by planning a visit.
Schedule a visit so that you can see what the facility is really like. Ask for a tour of the rooms and any common spaces that your parent would have access to.
If possible, bring your parent along. If they want to be involved in the decision-making process, it’s important that they see what the facility will really be like is he or she moves there.
Ask the Right Questions
When you do visit an assisted living facility, be sure to ask the right questions.
Consider the things you’d want to know once your parent moves there.
When can visitors come in? Are there staff on hand 24/7 to help with any medical or other needs? Are criminal background checks performed on all employees?
Asking these questions can help you make an informed decision about any assisted living facilities you are considering.
Choosing the Right Assisted Living Facility for Your Aging Parent
Choosing the right assisted living facility for your parent can feel like a burden. But if you do your research and choose the care facility that you feel is best, you’ll be giving your parent a safe, healthy place that meets their needs.
The Manor of Citrus is a group of 3 facilities, offering care for seniors with a range of needs. If you need to find an assisted living facility for your parent, schedule your tour today!