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What is it Like Working in Assisted Living?

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work in an Assisted Living facility? It’s not easy work, but it can be one of the most rewarding careers out there. The residents you meet and the relationships you build with both them and your fellow employees can literally change your life. When people move into senior living, it’s a huge adjustment. Being surrounded by staff that has the compassion to understand the difficulties we will all face later in life can make a huge difference.

What Can You Expect?

The main to expect when working in a nursing home or an assisted living community is to expect the unexpected. Typically, assisted living facilities are active communities and you never know what the day will bring. Of course, the main thing you will be focused on is providing care for the patients and residents who live there. This includes everything from nursing and medical care to helping a resident with their activities of daily living. You may run a senior yoga class, or arrange for a local high school choir to come in and perform a concert. You also may help residents with more sensitive tasks such as bathing, toileting, and getting from one place to another.

The Benefits of Working in an Assisted Living Community

While the work can be challenging, there are many benefits to working in a senior facility. If you are interested in a nursing career, working in assisted living provides the opportunity to work with nurses and gain some valuable hands-on experience. Most senior living facilities provide their staff with the opportunity to become First Aid and CPR certified free of charge. This way employees are always prepared to support a resident in need.

A more personal benefit is the ability to give back to a generation that did so much to help us learn and grow. It’s very rewarding to help members of your assisted living community live fuller, happier lives. Many long-term patients do not get regular visits from family and friends. So it means a lot when you building relationships with the residents. You may be surprised by the stories you’ll hear and the valuable lessons you can learn from the seniors you take care of day in and day out.

What Types of Employees Work in Assisted Living?

Many jobs come together to help nursing homes and assisted living facilities to run smoothly. We consider nurses management when it comes to the total care and medical needs of a patient. A nurse that works in any senior care facility needs special skills, training, and schooling to perform their duties. Certified Nursing Assistants, or CNAs, provide basic care to residents who need help completing daily tasks. They assist in nursing duties such as the daily monitoring and recording of vital signs. They also help patients with their daily physical needs, including eating, bathing, using the bathroom, and moving around.

Administration employees help run the day-to-day of the facility. While Marketing professionals work to spread the word about their facility and make sure potential residents see the benefits of one facility over another. The Maintenance staff has a huge responsibility in giving patients a clean and pleasing environment to live in. It takes a large team with many different skills to provide the high level of care residents deserve.

How to Adjust to an Assisted Living Career

If you have never worked in senior services before, it may take a bit of an adjustment before you are completely comfortable. One of the most important things to watch out for is something known as compassion fatigue. Most people who go for a job working in a nursing home or an assisted living facility do so because they want to make a difference. As much as you want to make an impact on the health and well-being of your residents, it’s important to maintain professional boundaries for your own health and well-being. Empathy is important when working in senior living, but empathy without boundaries can drain you both mentally and physically.

It’s also helpful to remember that not everyone who lives at your facility wants to be there. They may be suffering from serious healthcare problems such as dementia, or more general mental conditions such as depression. Basically, often aging seniors have a lot to deal with. Try not to take it personally if they are not initially receptive to your help and support.

Lastly, you can’t work in such a personal capacity with people without talking about grief. Death is never far away when working in a nursing home or senior care community. You will be in close contact and develop personal relationships with seniors who are nearing the end of their life. It can be very difficult to let go when the inevitable happens. Learn to lean on your peers. Talk to your coworkers and take advantage of any support program your facility has to offer.

If you are interested in finding a job within the assisted living community, there is always a need for professionals willing to take on the challenge. Come on board and get ready to embark on an amazing career. Visit our career page for more information see what positions are available!

7 Tips for Adjusting to Assisted Living Facility

Moving your parent into an assisted living facility is bound to be bittersweet, whether it’s a welcomed decision or not. Change is always difficult even in the best of circumstances, but when moving to an assisted living community, your loved one is leaving their home, and their independence, behind them.

There will be many emotions to sort through, for both you and your parents. They will most likely be mourning the loss of their younger years, nervous about the future, and grieving over the life they are leaving behind. You will inevitably feel guilt at making this decision. Sometimes wondering if you acted too quickly or if there was more you could do to help them stay in their home longer. Try not to worry, there are many ways you can help ease the transition into an assisted living community.

1. Make sure to pick an assisted living home that’s a good fit.

Most people find that assisted living becomes a necessity when their senior needs help with at least three daily living activities. Like eating, bathing, and dressing, for example. There are many priorities to consider when choosing the best senior living facility. Location is one of the biggest considerations that should be taken into account. Should you find one that’s close to where they are currently living? Or can they relocate somewhere closer to friends and family? It’s very helpful to have your parent nearby so you can support them with frequent visits, engage with staff members and take care of your loved ones day to day needs.

Quality of life is another thing to evaluate. What is the food and dining situation like? Do they have the types of social happenings Mom or Dad like to participate in? Investigate how they handle housekeeping services and medical assistance. Don’t underestimate transportation and parking either. You will probably be visiting frequently and you don’t want to waste time or money searching (or paying!) for parking.

Don’t be afraid to reach out for recommendations from family members, agencies that advocate for the elderly, or your local church community. These can be valuable resources as you search for the perfect place.

2. Help them make their new room their own.

The first few months of living at an assisted living facility are often made better by placing familiar items in their new environment. You obviously won’t be able to bring everything. But bringing along family photographs, their favorite books, and wall decorations can make the transition easier. You may even be able to take a favorite easy chair or dresser. Assisted living facilities want your family member to feel comfortable. They’ll encourage you to help your loved one set up their room just the way they like it.

3. Visit often and be an advocate.

Most experts agree that it’s best to visit your parent as much as possible. However, in the beginning, as your parents begin to adjust to assisted living, you will have to gauge how often you should visit. Frequent visits may help your senior feel at home and give them the confidence to take advantage of the benefits that come with their new home. But if you find that your loved one is coming to depend on your visits too much and not getting involved in their new community, it might be better to give them time to adjust on their own.

At the same time, it’s important to be an advocate for any new resident. They may feel hesitant to speak up for things that they want. The staff is almost always open to things that are outside the norm as long as it doesn’t interfere with the resident’s health or safety. Never be afraid to ask for special considerations or raise concerns on behalf of your parent.

4. Make sure they have access to the activities they loved.

Being able to still do the things they have always loved is important to helping a loved one with adjusting to assisted living. If your senior loves to read, make sure they have plenty of books at their disposal. If they have an obsession with movies, a TV and a DVD player may be in order. If they never missed their weekly bingo game, see if their new home has a regular game. Assisted living facilities have many activities for seniors to enjoy. So help your family member get involved in the ones they find the most interesting.

5. Provide them the means to maintain some independence.

In other words, try not to be overprotective. Of course you want to make sure Mom or Dad is taken care of. But our seniors had lives of their own before making this transition, and they will be happier if they feel like they are still in charge of their own lives to some extent.

If they are tech-savvy, give them a smartphone as a way to stay connected to the outside world, and a way to call you if they need something. Set them up with their own television and pay for cable so they can watch their favorite TV shows without having to do so in a common room. Many seniors live full and interesting lives inside assisted living, so be a part of it but don’t hover.

6. Encourage them to develop a community and life within the facility.

Don’t be afraid to leave a new resident alone to experience and socialize with their new community. Adjusting to assisted living will take some time. Once residents adjust to their new home, they will usually develop a whole new social circle filled with new friends, adventures, gossip, and drama. You want to be a part of their new life, you don’t want it to revolve around you. Encouraging them to be involved in their new surroundings really goes a long way to the long-term health and happiness of all residents.

7. Connect with the staff.

This may be one of the most important tips you get when moving your parent into a new facility. The staff are the ones that are responsible for taking care of all the residents. They will be interacting with them day in an day out, and will be the first to notice any change that should be brought to your attention. Developing a good connection with the staff will naturally create a better environment for your loved one. Involve them in discussions about how your loved one is adjusting to the transition. Talk to them about who your parent is, what they love to do and any personality traits they might want to be on the lookout for. Going the extra mile to show the staff that they are appreciated does wonders for everyone involved.

Bonus Tip – Be a Good Listener

Good senior care starts with being a good listener. When you move someone into an assisted living facility, it’s a difficult transition. Listen and be empathetic to your parent as they adjust to their new surrounding. Pay attention to the things they need, and bring them on your next visit. Listen to what the staff says about behavior they see, or changes that need to be dealt with. Listen to family members if they report back to you after seeing your loved one if you can’t be there. With patience and a lot of love, making the move into assisted living will be a great decision for everyone involved.

Types of Jobs in Assisted Living Homes

If you are looking for a career that allows you to give something back to others, one that touches lives and leaves the world a better place, you may want to consider jobs in an assisted living homes. Assisted living facilities need more than nurses. They are supported by a wide variety of people holding various full-time jobs. All working closely together to lift up those that call these communities home.

What is it like working in an assisted living facility?

Assisted living is different from a nursing home. Many who live in this type of community do not receive around-the-clock nursing care. They mostly need what is considered custodial care. Maybe they suffer from mobility issues and need help getting around, or they have minor memory loss and are no longer able to live completely on their own.

Unlike a nursing home, which requires more of a hospital feel due to the medical needs of its residents, assisted living is often made up of individual residential apartments, or suites. When you work at an assisted living facility, your days are never boring. You get the chance to build meaningful relationships, both with staff and the residents. You will encounter many different types of challenges that often require thinking outside the box. Whether you are helping a family support a depressed loved one or assisting a senior with mobility issues get his exercise, the work is rewarding and fulfilling.

Below is an overview of some of the jobs assisted living homes rely on to keep their residents safe and healthy.

Nursing

Even though assisted living communities don’t require 24/7 medical care, Nurses are often kept on staff to keep an eye on the resident’s health. If it’s a smaller community, they may use the services of a Visiting Nurse instead of having one on staff. However, most places keep at least one Nurse on-site at all times.

Nurses usually develop close relationships with residents, observing them in detail to ensure top-quality healthcare as a whole. They are responsible for managing total care. Which includes duties such as creating initial care plans, administering medications, giving injections, drawing blood, and preparing IVs when necessary. They are also responsible for meeting with the families to report changes in the health and safety of their loved ones living at the home.

CNA

Certified Nursing Assistants usually work under a nurse and provide basic care to residents who need help completing daily tasks. Certified Nursing Assistants will monitor vital signs and help residents with their daily needs. Things like eating, bathing, toileting, and moving around. Being a CNA is a physically challenging job, often requiring them to be on their feet most of the day. They will be the ones to help lift and move patients. They transfer them from one place to another and push them in wheelchairs whenever necessary.

Because they spend so much time with the residents, CNAs are a vital link between the resident and the rest of their healthcare team. Job seekers who are looking for a position within the healthcare industry can usually complete a CNA certification course within 4-12 weeks.

Resident Assistant

A career as a Resident Assistant means spending your days providing for the needs of residents and completing various administrative tasks as required. Some of the responsibilities overlap with things a CNA does. For example, bathing residents, helping them to the toilet, dressing them, cooking and serving meals, and collecting food trays. You may help answer phones, receive visitors and help nurses with documentation. RAs also assist in the planning and execution of social and recreational activities for the residents to enjoy. It is a challenging job, but a rewarding one.

Activities Director

One of the benefits of living in an Assisted Living community is easy access to activities. That job falls to the Activities Director. They are in charge of making sure the residents have plenty to do. Yoga, karaoke, movie nights, bingo, and exercise groups are usually scheduled on a regular basis for senior residents to take advantage of. The Activities Director may also look to outside resources to provide entertainment such as concerts or poetry readings as well as outside trips for those who are able to museums, theaters, and more. If you have great people skills and enjoy event planning and doing what you can to improve people’s quality of life, this is a great career choice.

Administration and Marketing

Job seekers that have no direct interest in health care may find their place working on the administration side of an Assisted Living Facility. These people typically include those that make sure their facilities are up-to-date regarding the latest state standards. Jobs in assisted living homes that fall under the administration umbrella include the Facilities Director, Administration Assistants, and other coordinators. And of course, Assisted Living Facilities need residents in order to be profitable. So that is where the marketing staff comes in. A Marketing Director is employed to spread the word about their facility. They also make sure potential residents see the benefits of one facility over another.

Mary T Senior Living

Rosa Camille Williams was a nurse who provided care in hospitals and homes in the early 1900s. She dedicated her life to those in need. She was the inspiration for her daughter, Margaret, and granddaughter, Mary T., to provide senior living services to those that need them. We have two Assisted Living locations that provide a healthy, safe, and caring environment for those that reside there.

Creekside Cottage

1190 117th Ave NW, Coon Rapids, MN 55448

Eagle Street

Eagle Street NW, Coon Rapids, MN 55448

Each of these 12-bed locations provide personal care for those with special medical needs and memory loss. Mary T as a company is proud to serve as employers to over 1,000 people who work a variety of different jobs. Visit our Careers page to learn more about jobs in assisted living homes and working for Mary T Inc.

Caring for an Elderly Parent

Watching your parents age can bring up a whole host of different emotions. It’s difficult to go from being cared for to being the caregiver, and it’s a role reversal that most of us will face at one time or another. Being a caregiver means different things to different people. It doesn’t matter if your elderly parents are aging in place, living in your home, an assisted living facility, or a nursing home. There will be things you’ll have to deal with that are outside of what you have done in the past. But how do you go about caring for an elderly parent? How do you turn the vague feeling of “My parents need help” into an actionable plan? Try not to be overwhelmed. Take things a step at a time and use the resources available to help you along.

Who is responsible for taking care of aging parents?

For some of us, the answer to this question is simple. It’s the responsibility of the adult children, right? Not necessarily. Relationships are complicated, and sometimes making the decision to become a caregiver can be very difficult. From a legal standpoint, whether or not adult children are responsible for their parents’ caregiving varies from state to state. 27 states have what are called Filial Responsibility Laws that require family members to take at least minimal responsibility for aging parents. In other states, children are under no legal requirement to provide senior care. But in general, most of us want to make sure our loved ones are cared for in some fashion.

How do you take care of elderly parents?

Caregiving comes in all sorts of shapes and sizes. It doesn’t mean that you have to allow your parents to move in with you and your family, although you may absolutely choose to do so. Caregiving simply means making sure the long-term care needs of your loved one are met. Seniors need support in many different ways. Some have health issues that need to be addressed. Some need help finding programs and services that can keep them in their own homes as long as possible. Others may require in-home care or even 24-hour supervision. How you choose to care for your aging parents is a deeply personal decision. What is right for one person may not be feasible for another.

Consider Their Needs

The best way to start caring for aging parents is to take a step back and see what they need help with. Consider what they do on a daily basis. Can they prepare their meals safely? How is their mobility? Do they have a good social support network? Do they have any health care issues that require assistance? Can they take care of their personal hygiene? Make sure to engage them in the conversation about how they feel about living on their own. Pay attention to how their home looks when you visit. You may discover that for the time being, your parents can take care of themselves and stay at home with some added safety precautions and additional care from you or someone else in the family. You can also tap into programs and services that provide some type of home care such as cleaning services or Meals-on-Wheels.

When it’s Time for the Next Step

However, you may find that your parents aren’t able to safely live on their own. If you and your aging parents agree that it’s time to find some extra support, take stock of what you are able and willing to provide. Your first instinct might be to bring them into your home, but caring for elderly parents takes time and commitment. You may find that you can’t provide your seniors with the help and support they need to be safe and healthy. In that case, finding another solution, such as an assisted living facility or a nursing home, may be the only option that will work for all involved.

How do you care for elderly parents at home?

A Teenage Girl with Mother and Grandmother at HomeCaregiving for aging loved ones in your home is a big decision that should be discussed openly and honestly with all involved. Once you have everyone on board, you can get down to the business of actually caregiving. Make sure you know what needs you have to meet to keep your Mom or Dad healthy and safe. Keep a notebook handy to jot down notes of things that you notice during the first few weeks you’re caring for them at home. Create a list of caregiving tasks that need to be completed on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Level of home care may change based on time of day, or on weekends. Decide how much you are able to handle on your own, and find help if you need it.

Taking care of a parent is often made easier by enlisting other family members for assistance, but there are also respite programs, cleaning services and more that can help out when time is a problem. If you work outside the home, try looking into adult daycare services that can watch your parent while at the office. Living with an aging parent has its own set of challenges, so it’s important not to get overwhelmed. Don’t be afraid to step back and reassess the situation if need be.

Is there government assistance for caring for elderly parents?

Caregivers may not be aware that there are many government programs available that can help if you are charged with taking care of an aging parent. You probably know that Medicare is available to cover the health care of seniors. Medicare Part A covers hospital care and is usually provided for free. Medicare Part B is additional health coverage and Part D covers prescriptions. Caregivers that discover they can’t meet the needs of their aging parents can get their seniors approved for Medicaid to help pay for a long-term care facility. Another option Medicaid provides is paying for in-home caregivers, and the person who provides that care can often be a family member, or even a spouse. Some states also offer financial assistance to caregivers of aging seniors.

The Administration of Aging has agencies located in each state to help families navigate health insurance questions, legal assistance and help with long-term care if that is something your senior needs. They are a great source of information and can point caregivers in the right direction to help resolve many of the challenges put forth when caregiving.

How do you deal with the stress of caring for an elderly parent?

Caring for aging parents can be a very rewarding experience, but it is also one of the most stressful things you may ever do. Oftentimes, a caregiver is so focused on the care they’re giving that they fail to provide care for themselves. This can lead to caregivers becoming overwhelmed and resentful. It can also have a negative effect on your own health, making you incapable of caring for anyone at all! So how do you deal with the stress?

For one thing, it’s extremely important for you to check in with yourself on a daily basis. Be sure you get enough sleep, exercise and downtime. Lean on family members to help with certain tasks. Make time for activities that you enjoyed prior to taking on your caregiving duties. There are caregiver support groups available in-person or online to help you navigate the new emotions and challenges that come with caregiving. Most important, try to remember that you can’t be everything to everyone. At the end of the day, you will know that you did the best you could to support your loved one as they take on their senior years.

If you’re looking for senior care and senior living options in Minnesota, our staff at Mary T will be happy to help. Contact us when you’re ready.

What Are the Three Principles of Assisted Living?

The principles of assisted living ensure that senior residents receive the very best care. By continually adhering to these principles, assisted living and nursing home residents can look forward to being treated respectfully and compassionately.

Let’s look at each of these three main principles in greater detail so you’ll know what you and your loved one can expect from assisted living communities.

1. Person-Centered Care

With this guiding principle in place, loved ones can always expect to get care that is centered on their individual needs. This is incredibly important, as it ensures that there is never a one-size-fits-all approach to assisted living.

Each and every resident is treated uniquely. Their care is based on their needs and not the needs of others or the majority. This approach supports each resident’s lifestyle. It ensures they get care and attention best suited for them.

Where one resident might benefit greatly from daily jogging, the same could actually harm another. In some cases, this applies to diet and other activities. As such, it’s important to follow the first principle at all times and without deviation.

2. Practice Ethics at All Times

Every assisted living community should operate on a foundation of trust. This means being transparent with residents on all applicable matters and ensuring the ethical and moral treatment of seniors living in these communities.

Integrity must therefore be at the forefront of how assisted living facilities operate. This goes hand-in-hand with the first principle. Which helps ensure that everyone is treated with the same high standard of care.

You will find this principle throughout senior care facilities across the United States. When your loved one makes the move to a nursing home or assisted living community, you want to be sure that they won’t be treated any differently from the rest of the residents.

Thanks to this guiding principle, you can rest easy knowing that we treat all residents at Mary T with the utmost respect.

3. Mission Statement

Each assisted living community’s mission statement should be focused on improving the environment and care of every resident. What’s more, should have access to every mission statement to help communicate the facility’s goals and values.

Furthermore, staff training should be ongoing, ensuring that every member of the team is up-to-date on the mission statement. This makes sure that the actions of everyone on staff reflect the community’s goals.

There should also be a consistent drive to improve operations and care throughout every assisted living community. With this, residents can be sure to receive the very best care and attention. It’s important for every staff member to practice these three principles in everything they do. This will ensure that each community operates at the highest level and continues to thrive.

Contact Our Senior Care Staff Today

At Mary T, we’re passionate about helping families find the right senior care services for their loved ones. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us so we can help you explore your options.

© 2021 Mary T. Inc. All rights reserved.

What Are the Recent Trends in Assisted Living?

With 2020 now in the rearview, we’ve seen some unique trends develop in assisted living communities, with more scheduled to come. In recent years, there’s been a push to meet seniors’ needs better than ever. If you are on the fence and having a hard time deciding if assisted living is right for you or your loved one, join us as we take a closer look at the latest trends.

Improving Dining

One of the benefits of assisted living is that it eliminates the burden of meal planning. But until recently, fine dining was a staple among senior living facilities. There’s now a shift to provide a casual dining experience, as well.

Not only does this offer an alternative to formal suit-and-tie dining, but it also allows for activities like billiards and sports bars.

Accommodations for Active Seniors

Many assisted living communities now cater to seniors who live active lifestyles. This means a greater variety of activities and services, such as travel opportunities and year-round social events.

With retirement communities moving away from the norms of yesteryear, there’s now so much more for seniors to enjoy.

Simpler Living

In recent years, society as a whole has slowly moved away from big living in favor of a more simplistic lifestyle. Fortunately, this trend is also finding its way to assisted living communities. Seniors are going to start seeing their living spaces simplified, resulting in easier living options across the United States.

For many elderly adults, complex housing makes it difficult to get around and live comfortably. Thanks to the simpler approach, seniors can look forward to less stress, better mobility, and more affordable housing options.

Fresh Facelifts

The drab colors that were once a mainstay in senior communities will soon be a thing of the past. Replacing them are fun and exciting colors that promote energy and well-being. Home interiors are being upgraded to provide a more modern feel, allowing residents far more decorating options.

This also includes modern textures, patterns, and open floor plans that are meant to accommodate seniors. Although senior living will be simplified for the sake of convenience, it will also see its fair share of upgrades give residents a long-overdue taste of the 21st century.

© 2021 Mary T. Inc. All rights reserved.

What Benefits Do Residential Communities Have for Older Adults?

Studies show that it’s important for aging seniors to have ongoing companionship. Loneliness can cause many serious problems, from depression and obesity to high blood pressure and heart trouble. As such, a residential community could be the answer to your loved one’s needs.

Let’s look at how seniors benefit from residential communities. This way you’ll have the peace of mind that your loved one is receiving the care and attention they need for a healthy quality of life.

Companionship

Perhaps most importantly, seniors can look forward to being surrounded by residents who share similar outlooks and a need for community. Just having someone in the same age group to share thoughts and feelings with can be a big blessing to seniors.

Because senior living communities are very much like other residential areas, seniors have a true sense of togetherness and are less likely to feel alone.

What’s more, there are many programs and activities throughout the week that give residents something fun and engaging to look forward to. From book clubs to arts and crafts to dances and church services. Your loved one will never be short on ways to socialize and build friendships.

Healthy Living

Seniors can enjoy the freedom of not having to plan meals or go grocery shopping. That’s because there are on-site chefs who create healthy, balanced meals every day for community residents.

With a well-balanced diet comes the need for plenty of exercise. Thanks to the many wellness programs available at senior living communities, there are all kinds of exercise opportunities awaiting discovery.

Some facilities offer yoga classes and other programs. Combined with a nutritious daily diet, your loved one’s overall health is sure to thrive.

Low Maintenance

One of the most appealing advantages of community life is not having to worry about tiresome yard work and chores. Many seniors prefer to avoid shoveling snow in frigid temperatures or mowing the lawn in the scorching sun.

The same is true when there’s a leak in the roof or a drain gets clogged. It would be much more convenient if someone else could take care of it. Residents in a senior community don’t have to worry about such tasks ever again. Staff members and professionals will handle these services.

Not only does this help prevent a pulled back or achy muscles, but it also keeps seniors from having to foot the bill. By taking the burden off of the residents, they can focus on enjoying life and community instead of worrying about fixing things around the house.

Safety and Security

Many senior living communities are gated. This ensures that only residents, friends, and family members are welcome. And any time a senior leaves the community, whether to run errands or take a vacation, they have the peace of mind that their home and belongings are safely guarded while they’re gone.

This extends to just taking a walk in the evening. With outside visitors able to get in, there’s a true sense of privacy and safety when living in a residential community.

© 2021 Mary T. Inc. All rights reserved.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Assisted Living?

Assisted living communities offer seniors a safe residence to live independently, make new friends, and enjoy daily living activities with an occasional helping hand. But how do you know if your loved one is a good fit for assisted living?

Are there any downsides that family members need to be aware of? Today, we’re going to help you decide whether assisted living is the best option for your loved one. We’ll look at the benefits that many assisted living communities offer, as well as potential drawbacks that need to be considered.

Pros of Assisted Living

Help With Activities of Daily Living

Many seniors need a helping hand with personal care and daily activities, such as bathing, dressing, and preparing meals, for example. The benefits of assisted living are designed to accommodate seniors who need help with non-medical tasks, yet can still live largely independent lives.

Adapts to a Wide Range of Needs

Throughout the course of living in an assisted community, your loved one may require a different level of care from when they first moved in. As such, assisted living facilities offer adaptable care services to help seniors maintain their quality of life.

If it is determined that any seniors need help that isn’t offered by the assisted living facility, more accommodating care options will be recommended.

Home Maintenance

Another of the many benefits of assisted living is the peace of mind that loved ones don’t have cleaning and maintaining their homes. Instead, they can focus on enjoying life without the burden of having to fix things or perform maintenance tasks.

This includes mowing the lawn and other yard care. Some assisted living communities provide assistance with laundry and similar household chores. In doing so, seniors have much more freedom and time to do what they please, such as attending on-site activities and get-togethers.

Privacy and Security

Because an assisted living facility is similar to a home setting, seniors have a lot more privacy. That said, there are often many opportunities to socialize with other residents. Many assisted living facilities offer daily activities and events that help improve quality of life.

It’s not uncommon to find dedicated buildings that house church services, dancing, arts and crafts, and much more. Assisted living residents are also capable of getting daily exercise and can enjoy doing so in a safe environment.

Each senior community is accessible only to other assisted living residents. Therefore, outside parties and unwanted guests won’t be able to get in without first being cleared by one of the residents of the community.

This ensures that seniors can take walks and socialize in peace and safety without fear of being bothered by someone who doesn’t live there.

Cons of Assisted Living

Cost

Although not as expensive as a nursing home, moving to an assisted living facility isn’t cheap. If your loved one is struggling with financial difficulties and family members can’t afford to cover the costs of care, you’ll need help from outside resources and programs, and even then there’s no guarantee.

Coping With Change

Most seniors like to do things their way. After all, they’ve been doing so for many years now. Although nothing notably restrictive, some of the rules may prove challenging for seniors to adjust to.

Just the idea of moving from their lifelong home can pose problems. As such, it’s important to reach out to our senior care specialists. We can work with you to help overcome these roadblocks and ensure a smooth transition.

© 2021 Mary T. Inc. All rights reserved.

How Does a Senior Qualify for Assisted Living?

If you are considering moving a loved one to an assisted living facility, it’s likely because they are struggling to care for themselves. But what exactly makes someone eligible for assisted living? It’s important to choose the correct long-term care plan for your loved one. Knowing what qualifies seniors for assisted living will ensure that they get the help they need through the proper care services.

Let’s discuss the various criteria that assisted living residents must meet. This way you can make the best decision for your family. With the help of this guide, you can be sure to give your loved one the care they deserve.

Assisted Living Qualifications

Requires Help With Non-Medical Needs

Assisted living facilities are designed to provide help with daily tasks  (such as using the restroom) and personal care (bathing, dressing, and eating). Essentially, any activities of daily living that aren’t necessarily medical in nature.

If your loved one has difficulty preparing their own meals or completing household chores, it may be time to make the move to assisted living.

Mobility

With that said, assisted living residents are typically capable of getting around on their own. Even if they require the aid of a wheelchair, cane, or walker. Many seniors in assisted living communities have independent living skills that allow them to be left alone for most of the time.

Independence is key. Those who need senior care around the clock are likely better suited for nursing homes.

Able to Live Independently

As we just discussed, assisted living residents are going to be on their own more often than not.  They’re receive occasional assistance from staff to help with non-medical daily living activities. Many assisted living communities are designed like small apartments. They just offer greater accessibility while making it easier to get around.

Stable or No Medical Conditions

Assisted living residents should also be free of debilitating medical issues. Many older adults with arthritis or chronic pain live happy lives in assisted living communities. However, they are still able to care for themselves for most daily tasks.

Seniors with medical conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease require a higher level of care and should therefore consider other senior living options. Nursing homes, for example, help seniors who require ongoing nursing care–something assisted living facilities don’t provide.

As such, seniors with memory conditions are likely to need long-term care from a skilled nursing facility. Although some assisted living communities offer daily medication management, they are not equipped for things like insulin injections, feeding tubes, and other similar medical services.

Need Guidance? We Can Help!

Here at Mary T, we understand how challenging and overwhelming it can feel trying to find the best care for seniors. Assisted living facilities and nursing homes are but a couple of senior living options to consider for your loved one.

To ensure that you choose the right level of care, we encourage you to reach out to our senior care specialists. We will be happy to assist you during this difficult time.

© 2021 Mary T. Inc. All rights reserved.

Nursing Home vs Assisted Living

Many people often equate nursing homes with assisted living communities and vice versa. This is understandable, as senior living as a whole tends to get blurred into one subject. However, nursing home care and assisted living are two different things entirely.

As you search for the right living arrangement for your loved one, it is important to understand the differences between senior living services and nursing home vs assisted living. Here at Mary T, we want you to be able to make the best decision for the senior in your life who is planning to transition to a senior care facility.

Nursing Home vs Assisted Living: How to Choose the Right Level of Care

It can be difficult trying to determine the best level of care for loved ones. Fortunately, you have resources available that can help make your decision easier.

Our senior living specialists are happy to offer their assistance in finding the best residential care based on your loved one’s needs. Contact us at your earliest convenience so we can walk you through your options.

What is the next level of care after assisted living?

Memory care is often the next level of care. It provides failure-free activities designed to accommodate seniors living with memory loss. This level of care may also offer family members educational support to help deal with the challenges that memory loss and dementia often present.

When should you move from assisted living to a nursing home?

One of the most notable clues is if caregivers are finding it more and more challenging to meet your loved one’s needs. This may present itself in the form of frustration or feeling increasingly tired. If the need for care is getting to be more than you or the caregiver can handle, or if your loved one’s health is deteriorating, it may be time to consider a nursing home.

Nursing Home vs Assisted Living: What’s the Difference?

Assisted Living

Assisted livingelderly man with caretaker communities are ideally designed for seniors who are capable of providing most of their own care but still need a helping hand with some daily living tasks. When your loved one moves to an assisted living facility, they are able to live largely independently.

Many assisted living facilities offer a wide range of recreational activities and on-site services. For example, it isn’t uncommon to find happy hours, restaurant-quality dining, and outings provided for residents.

Assistance is still available to assisted living residents, such as those who need help with laundry and housekeeping. If a senior needs help with daily medication management, assisted living communities offer those services, as well.

You can trust that your loved one will have access to assistance with common activities of daily living, ensuring that all of their needs are met.

Nursing Homes

Also called convalescent homes, nursing homes are specifically designed for those who require 24-hour residential care. Nursing home residents may suffer from physical or mental conditions that make full-time skilled nursing care a necessity.

This can include bathing, dressing, and other personal care, as well as medical care. These care services ensure that nursing home residents receive personalized attention based on their medical needs. Nursing home care is often synonymous with long-term care and can help prevent illnesses from worsening.

A Deeper Level of Care

Hands of Elderly WomanAssisted living and nursing home facilities provide many of the same services, such as medication management and housekeeping, but differ in the latter being intended for residents who can no longer live independently.

Many seniors in skilled nursing facilities are wheelchair-bound or bedridden. Because of this, they have additional needs that must be met on a daily basis to ensure their health and safety. A nursing home may be the right choice if your loved one needs daily medical care to live comfortably.

There are times when an elderly person staying in an assisted living facility experiences declining health and has to be moved to a nursing facility. If you are faced with this decision and don’t know where to turn, we invite you to contact us right away.

Our specialists will be happy to speak with you and provide the guidance and direction you need. We have assisted many families in transitions like this, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us. It’s important to remember that you don’t have to face these difficult decisions on your own.

On-Site Medical Care

Nursing homes provide medical services that range from physical occupational and speech therapy to rehabilitation and respiratory care. When seniors transition to skilled nursing facilities, you can trust they will be well cared for at all times. This includes daily meals that are based on the nutritional needs of each resident.

Some seniors who require the care of nursing homes have suffered an injury or have a chronic medical condition. Fortunately, nursing home residents can get their medical care on-site. That’s one huge benefit nursing homes have over assisted living. Assisted living simply provides transportation services for residents to attend appointments.

Skilled nursing care aside, there are still plenty of activities available to ensure that personal needs are met. Oftentimes, nursing homes include designated common areas regularly used for church and community gatherings.

Is assisted living better than a nursing home?

Nursing homes and assisted living facilities both have their place in senior care. One is not necessarily better than the other. It all depends on the needs of the seniors who are transitioning from their homes.

Assisted living facilities are more suitable for residents who can still provide some of their own daily care, whereas nursing homes are better suited to those who cannot. Both residential services offer plenty of recreational activities and promote community interaction with new people.

However, the need for family is still encouraged for the well-being of residents. Seniors who move to a care facility or community are often leaving behind their homes of many years, along with a lifetime of memories.

Having familiar people in their lives can make their transition easier. It can also make a big difference in the overall health of the residents. It is therefore important to make time for family members who are moving to nursing homes or assisted living communities.

We Can Help

At Mary T, we understand how important it is to find the right residence for your loved one’s needs. We’re happy to help you along the way to ensure that you make the best decision for your family. If you or your loved one live in Minnesota or Arizona, contact us so that we can provide the direction you need.

Our senior care team has years of training and experience to ensure that you receive the very best help as you search for the best housing option for your family. As always, we look forward to serving you and hope to hear from you soon.

© 2021 Mary T, Inc. All rights reserved.