The thought of looking for a retirement community for yourself or a loved one can be very overwhelming. But how do you know if you are ready to start looking into different living arrangements?
There is never a wrong time to start looking for retirement living options for you or a loved one. It is never too early to do your research. The sooner you begin your search, the more time you have to fully research your options.
It is important to think about what level of care you need to look at. Generally you will be looking for independent living, assisted living, or nursing care.
Broadly speaking, independent living is for those who are just looking to give up the burdens of home ownership and may just want to make their lives simpler. They may want to have more companionship, security and peace of mind.
Assisted living is for those who need assistance with their personal care, such as bathing, dressing and grooming, and may be in need of medication management. Someone may need help with these activities of daily living due to physical limitations or cognitive impairments. For those who have more advanced cognitive impairments, they may be in need of a memory care assisted living facility, where there are more specialized programs for those with memory loss or with issues like wandering.
Those in need of 24-hour medical and personal care would be best cared for at a skilled nursing facility. The staff there is equipped to handle more complex medical issues and provide 24-hour skilled care.
Be aware that many communities and facilities have waiting lists, so don’t wait until there is a crisis to start looking. By looking at options early, you will be able to have what you need to make an informed decision and it will allow you to have choices, rather than having to take what happens to be available.
Tips to Remember:
• Be proactive, do your research early.
• If in the hospital or rehab, enlist the help of the social worker or discharge planner.
• Even if a community has a waiting list, still call for information.
• Don’t wait for a crisis; make a decision while it is still your decision to make.
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The GreenFields Continuing Care Community is located on Broadway in Lancaster, offering independent living apartments at GreenField Manor and assisted living apartments at GreenField Court. The GreenField Health & Rehabilitation Center provides skilled nursing care, inpatient rehabilitation services and outpatient therapy. GreenField Terrace provides memory care and enhanced assisted living. To learn more about what GreenFields has to offer, please call our Senior Living department at (716) 684-8400.