With life expectancy increasing all the time, care for the elderly has changed dramatically over the years and today there are a range of residential care options available for the elderly. However, with a greater range of alternatives, it can be confusing and even daunting discovering the type of living that will best suit your needs. Here we set out to clarify and identify what Assisted Living or Extra Care Living is and what it involves and whether it is the best and most suitable choice for you or your loved ones.
Assisted Living is a somewhat general term although the aim is for individuals or couples to live as independently as possible in a specialist complex. It’s a fabulous alternative if people are finding it difficult to live completely independently at home but do not need the 24-hour care provided by a Care Home or a Nursing Home. If you’re thinking it sounds like sheltered housing then think again. Assisted Living provides far more in both services and facilities. It’s about prolonging independence in a safe, caring, socially active and supportive environment. This means that people can receive help with day-to-day tasks and chores such as cleaning, washing and cooking leaving them free to enjoy more quality time taking part in activities and pastimes that they really want to do.
What’s On Offer Varies Significantly With Assisted Living Providers
Assisted Living is a generic term meaning all providers differ significantly in what they offer. Assisted Living should provide a great alternative to a Residential Retirement Home and many older people are now benefiting from state-of-the-art assisted living facilities. However, the level of service and facilities can change greatly between each provider. Some will just provide an on-site lounge and restaurant where you can purchase a lunchtime meal whereas others, like Richmond Villages, have lots of facilities and provide a full hotel style service. This includes all meals either served in the restaurant or delivered to your apartment, a daily maid service and all laundry. They also provide bespoke care packages and have staff on-site 24 hours a day. So, make sure you do your homework.
Benefits of Assisted Living Over a Care Home
- More privacy
- Choice of accommodation
- You own your own home
- More control – bring in your own furniture
- Own bathroom and kitchen
- Freedom to come and go as you please
- Staff on hand when necessary
- Live with your partner
- Can rent or buy your home
- Safe and secure
- Controlled access
- Private and communal leisure areas and gardens
Your Own Property With Complete Peace of Mind
With Assisted Living, you are living in your own property giving you freedom and independence with the added on-going professional support and security to give complete peace of mind.
If you have decided Assisted Living or Extra Care is the right option for you, it’s important to consider the following:
- What facilities do you need?
- Consider your future needs
- How much can you afford and what will it cost?
- Are the costs transparent?
- Is the package and support comprehensive?
Social Interaction Opportunities
Assisted Living provides opportunities for friendship and social interaction with many retirement communities offering regular, organised group activities, as well as exercise programmes and options of joining a book club or playing bridge. You can even take up new hobbies and enjoy local entertainment and trips to attractions and places of interest. Some have onsite libraries or gardens where residents can bond over common interests.
A Range Of Facilities
As already mentioned, Assisted Living facilities vary enormously with some having hairdressers, shops, restaurants, cafes, even fitness centres onsite. The amount of outdoor space also varies with some having expansive gardens for you to enjoy without the back- breaking maintenance. Some Retirement Villages provide Assisted Living and resemble 5 star hotels featuring luxurious lounges, craft rooms, wellness spas, beauty treatment rooms and wonderfully landscaped gardens.
What To Do Next
Today, people have high expectations. Basically Assisted Living is an attractive retirement option for many people who don’t require round-the-clock care or support. It is now firmly established as an alternative to residential care.
There is a lot of evidence suggesting that many people feel it’s the best move that they have ever made as they find more time to enjoy themselves. Assisted Living can give people a new lease of life, whilst maintaining their freedom and independence in a safe, secure and social environment.
Richmond Villages are an award-winning retirement village operator providing an Assisted Living Lifestyle Package where you can buy your own luxurious village suite.
For more information, call 0808 2783 844 and speak to a member of our friendly team.