The line between independent living and assisted living isn’t hard and fast. A spectrum of services means individuals can search for the level of assistance that suits their needs and goals of living as independently as possible.
The No. 1 tip that experts in senior living offer on the topic is to plan ahead. Doing so can help one stay in one’s own home longer or retain more independence and control over housing and other decisions.
We often think, ‘This could never happen to me,’ and we always procrastinate. You have to be proactive.
Being proactive can mean everything from downsizing one’s belongings sooner rather than later to exploring senior living options. The goal is to ensure such decisions aren’t made hastily later on, with little time for consideration and preparation.
At the same time, it’s important to inform family members, such as one’s children, about these decisions and plans.
Depending on where an individual lives resources for remaining independent vary. Some areas have publicly funded and private for-pay transportation options, for example, and some have active networks of volunteers ready to assist those who no longer can drive.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services also recommends planning ahead, for example by familiarizing oneself with local transportation options before such services are needed.
Additionally, improving or prolonging one’s mobility and flexibility is a key part of staying independent.
Senior living complexes are another option for individuals seeking out such resources, whether they choose to live in independent living or assisted living apartments. In addition to dining and linen services, transportation and other daily chores or living needs that these facilities can help with, they sometimes connect residents with other groups and organizations.
For more information on senior living, contact Spring Arbor.