Senior living can be life-changing. It has been proven that seniors lead better, healthier, happier lives in senior living communities. So although caregivers may worry that moving a loved one to senior living means downgrading their quality of life, the truth is that assisted/supportive living can offer care and hope that even the best home-based caregivers cannot match. Here’s how assisted living can help your loved one live a better life.
Some of the many benefits of senior living include:
Living alone can be profoundly isolating. For some seniors, this isolation often comes with a hefty dose of anxiety. Your loved one might worry about what will happen if they fell, who will help if there is an intruder in the house, or how they will get to their next doctor’s appointment. Your loved one may be left alone with their worries, unwilling to voice them for fear of stressing out family members. And if they have dementia, living alone can trigger anxiety-related pacing and repetitive behaviors.
Senior living offers your loved one a safe place where they can get help when they need it, spend time with other seniors, and feel like a valued member of a community. That means less anxiety—and fewer anxiety-related problems.
Loneliness feels awful, especially when there’s no clear end to the loneliness in sight. Seniors who have spent their lives working or caring for others may feel abandoned and discarded if they live alone or have limited contact with others. These feelings can lead to depression and hopelessness. They may also harm their long-term health. Loneliness is a serious public health crisis that some doctors have compared to smoking or obesity. Living with other seniors means less loneliness, which can mean better health.
More social connections
A Senior Living Community is about more than just living near other seniors. We work to foster meaningful, lasting relationships between like-minded seniors. Your loved one may forge new friendships at Sunnymere.
A more active lifestyle
Exercise is a key ingredient in the recipe for a healthy life. But with age and infirmity, physical activity can become more difficult. Your loved one might not feel safe walking around the neighborhood alone. They might worry about a fall when lifting weights, not know how to get transportation to yoga class, or simply lack the motivation to get moving on their own. At Sunnymere, we make exercise fun and low-key by providing exercise classes.
Better nutrition can mean a better life. Foodies may crave excellent meals, but not have time or energy to prepare their own food. People with special nutritional needs may lack the knowledge or budget to prepare quality food. Sunnymere provides three meals/day every day. Our chef worked in the restaurant world for many years before he came to Sunnymere. He knows what seniors like to eat!
Less dependence on family
Family is supposed to be there for you in good times and bad times. But when the help and support only runs one way, it’s easy for seniors to feel frustrated and even lose self-esteem. Most seniors want to continue being the family figurehead, offering wisdom, guidance, and support. When they have to rely on kids or grandkids to manage daily tasks, that goal becomes elusive. Moving into senior living restores a sense of dignity and can fundamentally rebalance seniors’ relationships with the people they love most.
Is It Time to Move Your Loved One to a Senior Community?
Here are some signs that moving might be the best option for you and your loved one:
- You, as the family member, feel increasingly overwhelmed by the demands of care giving.
- Care giving is undermining your relationship with your loved one or with other family members.
- Your loved one needs more help with daily tasks, such as bathing and dressing.
- Your loved one has a progressive disease that will likely get worse, and you do not have enough time or resources to spend on caregiving.
- Your loved one seems anxious, lonely, or depressed.
- Your once-vibrant loved one now spends most of their time alone at home, but wishes they had the energy or resources to do more.
- You’re spending more and more time tending to their home maintenance tasks, or your loved one no longer has the budget to care for their own home.
- Your loved one can’t live alone, but it won’t work for them to live with you.
- You think your loved one needs more friends and support, but you don’t know how to help them achieve that goal.
- Your loved one’s doctor says they need in-home help or assisted living.
- Your loved one has developed unhealthy behaviors.
- Your loved one has early-stage dementia and has begun making risky decisions.
- Your loved one is at a high risk of falling, but lives alone.
If you think assisted living might be right for your loved one, it all begins with a conversation. Try talking to your loved one about all that it can add to their life. The goal should be for them to see it as a form of enrichment, not a loss of independence, and certainly not something that is being forced upon them.
Please note: During the Covid 19 shutdown, Sunnymere is not doing any in-person tours. We do have a series of photos on our website to show your our building. Please contact us at Sunnymere@sunnymere.com for more information.
At Sunnymere, we’ve watched countless seniors thrive and blossom in senior living. Some of our residents were once reserved and anxious, but upon transitioning to our community, have found a new sense of purpose and meaning.