Getting older doesn’t take away our desire to remain active and independent. However, it does mean that we may require additional services and help in order to stay independent. Many older adults may find that moving into an assisted living community will significantly boost their health and well-being, but just as many balk at the idea.
“A lot of people, particularly older people, think that assisted living facilities and nursing homes are the same thing,” says Tracy Deal, Executive Director of Azpira at Windermere, an Assisted Living and Memory Support community providing thoughtful and award-winning care to seniors. “Obviously, that’s not the case – nursing homes, or skilled nursing facilities, are for individuals who need long-term care or medical care that requires physician assistance. Assisted living, on the other hand, is for older adults who need some help with activities of daily life, but can otherwise continue to live a healthy, happy and independent lifestyle.”
Still, the difference between senior living options can be confusing. Here are some of the specific ways that assisted living is different from other senior community options:
Personal care and support (but not medical care).
Unlike independent living (which is a completely independent lifestyle for active adults who don’t require assistance to live on their own), assisted living is a bit more hands-on. Trained staff members are available to help residents with activities of daily living (ADLs) like dressing, mobility, grooming, toileting, medication management and anything else the individual might need. Medical care, however, isn’t part of assisted living (for example, medication can’t be administered by the staff, but they can help manage it for the individual).
A community-focused lifestyle.
Much like an independent living community, assisted living communities are focused on lifestyle choices. The communities, then, are designed to be a little town of their own, with several dining room options, different floor plans, and a variety of features such as a library, outdoor areas, art studios and other benefits that make the community seem more resort-like than institutionalized. Unlike memory care or skilled nursing, the additional care that assisted living provides is more of a background service – something that’s there when the individual needs it and never more than that.
A focus on privacy and independence.
Some seniors may not want to move to assisted living because they believe they won’t be as independent or have the same privacy as before. In assisted living, though, there is a very high focus on independence and privacy. In communities with higher levels of care, such as skilled nursing or memory care, staff members and care services are ubiquitous and are entrenched in the daily life of residents. In assisted living, on the other hand, seniors are able to pick and choose assistance as they need it. In other words, assisted living is very similar to independent living, just with a helping hand when necessary.
Less than higher levels of care.
Due to the services it provides, assisted living costs more than independent living but less than memory care, skilled nursing or rehabilitation services. There are additional costs in assisted living that could potentially be covered by Medicare, Medicaid or private insurance. Just like you might be able to pay for home care aids with insurance, you can potentially do the same for assisted living costs.
Additional healthcare services available on site.
This is actually something that is similar to most levels of senior living options, but assisted living often has a higher focus on providing healthcare options for residents. This can range from having a health and wellness center to regular visits from visiting physicians. This allows residents to receive the care and support they need without having to leave the community (saving a lot of stress and providing more peace of mind).
While there are differences between assisted living and other forms of care, it’s important to remember that all forms of senior care are similar in their purpose of helping older adults live healthy, happy lifestyles that are as independent as possible. That focus, plus any supportive services, can help older adults enjoy their golden years for many years to come.
Live Well. Age Well. Be Well.
At Azpira at Windermere, located in Windermere, FL, we’re redefining how older adults Live Well. Age Well. Be Well. Our lifestyle is far from “typical.” Our vibrant and engaging Assisted Living and uplifting A Knew Day® Memory Support inspires our residents to live passionately with purpose every single day.
Step outside your apartment and you’ll experience a community offering thoughtful and award-winning VIVA!SM programs that are proven to enhance your life spiritually, mentally and physically. Azpira at Windermere’s team of specially trained wellness professionals is passionate about building unique relationships with every resident and guiding older adults as they set new goals, forge new relationships and live life at their own pace.
Azpira at Windermere is all about creating an environment that is ahead of the curve in wellness, fitness, spirituality, technology and preventative care. As the times and technology are changing, so are we. Residents and their families, along with our Resident Care Manager, will meticulously build a wellness plan that addresses medicine distribution, fitness objectives, nutrition needs and socialization goals.
Get excited about life at Azpira at Windermere. Our team is eager to guide you on the path you want to live – whether it’s enjoying your own city, exploring new ones, spending time with old friends or spearheading a program of your own, this is your time to live the life you want with the luxury you deserve.
To learn more or to schedule a personal visit, contact us at 407-278-8508.