The current U.S. senior population is booming, which is largely driven by the baby boomer generation. There are over 52 million Americans aged 65 and older, a number that’s projected to hit 95 million by 2060. At this age and beyond, it may get to a point where your senior loved one needs care due to illnesses like Alzheimer’s or simply because of old age.
When it gets to this point, you may need to consider assisted living, especially if you’re not available to provide the care they need. If your loved one lives alone, like 27% of adults in the U.S. aged 60 and above, you may want to consider assisted living a lot sooner compared to those who have spouses or live with family members.
The question is, how do you know it’s the right time to move them to an assisted living facility? How do you even know what type of care they need? Our article covers this subject thoroughly, and we hope this information will help you make an informed decision.
Signs Your Loved One Needs Assisted Living
As your loved one ages, there are certain signs that you can look out for to know whether they require assisted living. Most of these signs are related to the daily activities and medical conditions they may currently be going through.
You may start to notice that they have trouble taking a bath on their own or have unpaid bills, which could mean they no longer have the cognitive abilities to understand what they should do. Here are some of the telltale signs you should watch out for:
Being Frail and Having Poor Hygiene
If your loved one lives alone, they may still have the ability to take care of themselves, but if they have a complete lack of motivation to do so, you may want to consider assisted living. If you notice that they have a bad odor because they rarely shower or have neglected their grooming habits, it may be an indication that they’ve grown tired of taking care of themselves.
It may also mean that they are losing their ability to do so. You may also have noticed that they have become frail and look a lot thinner than usual, which could be an indication that they’re no longer eating as they should or have a medical problem that has not been addressed. If you notice any of these things, you need to take note and find a solution for whatever problem they’re facing.
A Messy Living Space
How did you find the house when you’ve visited your loved one? Was it in a messy state? Was it untidy and odorous?
These are usually telltale signs that your loved one is unable to clean up after themselves. You may find that they can no longer vacuum the house or even put the dishes in the dishwasher, which is an indication that they need to be assisted with the day-to-day chores. At this point, you must check what kind of food they have been eating.
Check the fridge and the pantry as they may not be able to go for groceries anymore. Check whether they have stacked up spoiled foods, too many leftovers, a lot of similar foods, or too much takeout.
All these could be an indication that they are unable to cook for themselves anymore and are no longer eating healthy meals to sustain themselves. All these are situations that communicate that your loved one needs help, and one of the best places you can put them is in an assisted living facility.
Isolation is a prevalent problem and a very serious one at that. It can affect the overall health of your senior loved one. When they isolate themselves, they decrease the amount of time they participate in social interactions with friends, family, and even neighbors and avoid hobbies and activities they loved doing.
You may even find that they no longer leave the house and just want to be alone. One of the biggest issues of isolation is that it’s usually accompanied by health issues such as depression, mortality, and addiction. If your loved one is depressed, it may be because they feel they lack a sense of purpose, and this can easily lead to other diseases such as dementia.
They could also develop bad habits that lead to addiction, such as drinking, smoking, and prescription drug abuse. Beyond that, isolation is related to mortality rates, which makes it imperative for you to move them to an assisted living home, so they no longer feel alone.
They Have Monetary Issues
Aging seniors get to a point where they can no longer keep up with all the financial responsibilities, such as paying bills, insurance, and banking. If you find that bills have piled up and your loved one no longer pays for insurance, it could be that they can no longer do it themselves or have no motivation to conduct those tasks.
It may also be an underlying health condition such as dementia that’s affecting their ability to think abstractly. They may no longer be able to handle calculations or know how to handle these bills. Even worse, it may get to a point where your loved one is susceptible to scams and financial fraud, especially if they live alone.
If your loved one is having a hard time taking care of the financial responsibilities, you need to take a step and move them to an assisted living home where they no longer have to worry about these issues.
Health Condition They Can’t Manage
Most people develop chronic illnesses as they age, and you may realize that it’s getting worse for your loved one. Regardless of how serious their condition is, they need to be cared for so they can eat right and take their medication accordingly. Even if they don’t have a chronic condition, their potential for medical emergencies is a lot higher as they age.
For instance, a large number of slip and fall accidents happen to seniors, some of which are usually fatal. It’s not safe for your loved one to live alone if they are susceptible to accidents or emergencies.
If you notice that they’re struggling with mobility, you mustn’t allow them to live alone anymore. Instead, research some of the best assisted living facilities in your area where your loved one will be taken care of in case of these emergencies.
Finding the Best Assisted Living Facility
It may be hard for you to acknowledge that your loved one needs full-time care, but if you’re not in a position to offer it, you need to find the best senior assisted living facility for them. It’s natural for you to be concerned about their health, safety, and overall happiness. For this reason, it’s only right that you take advantage of assisted living facilities because your loved one will be well taken care of, and you will have nothing to worry about.
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