Assisted-living facilities are homes for the elderly or disabled that provide them with housekeeping, cooking and nursing care support. In an assisted-living environment, there may be some elderly or disabled people who do more for themselves than others.
Over time, most people who enter these homes will need increased care. For the most part, the facilities are good about recognizing when an elder needs more around-the-clock monitoring and when a transfer to a nursing home is a good idea.
Assisted-living facilities may be freestanding communities or be located within a short distance of a nursing home. For example, an assisted-living facility may be across the lot from a nursing home, so that it's easy to take patients from one to the other when it's time to do so. The same facility may also be linked to wards for dementia and memory loss and other specialist categories.
There are several services and activities that assisted-living facilities should provide to their patients. Some of them include:
- Housekeeping and maintenance
- Personal care services, such as help with dressing, toileting and bathing
- Meal services
- Recreational and spiritual activities
- Social services
- Medication management
- Assistance for people with dementia or Alzheimer's disease
- Exercise programs
- Wellness programs
- Linen and laundry service
What should you look for when choosing an assisted-living facility for your loved one?
Everyone's preferences are going to vary slightly, but if you're looking for an assisted-living facility, make sure it offers the above activities and services, go to the facility to see what it's like there and note if it's affiliated with a nursing home. Taking these steps can help you make the best choice.