There are roughly one million people currently living in assisted living communities in the U.S. These are adults who require a bit of help performing daily tasks such as maintaining hygiene or keeping track of their medications. Whilst residents of assisted living communities are generally still able to maintain their independence, the help from team members can greatly improve their quality of life. It is important to understand when your loved ones require this help. Here are 5 signs to move into assisted living:
Signs of Hunger or Weight Loss
Aging adults need proper nutrition to lead a balanced and healthy life. However, meal preparation can be difficult as we grow older, which may be detrimental to their eating habits. If you notice that your loved ones are often hungry, losing weight, or looking malnourished, it may be a sign that they are struggling with cooking or shopping for groceries. With assisted living, one does not need to worry about meal preparation as dining is catered for.
Declining Personal Hygiene
A lot of older adults have difficulties showering and grooming themselves. For example, a lack of showering and dental care can cause a decline in personal hygiene. In addition, how clean their clothes are can alert you to whether they are struggling with doing the laundry. With assisted living, our team can help your loved ones with these tasks, ensuring a healthier lifestyle.
Worsening Living Conditions
Oftentimes, regular chores and maintenance of the house and yard become difficult for older adults. Whilst it is possible to bring in external help – from friends and family – to upkeep the house, if the dirty living conditions continue to persist despite this, perhaps it is time to consider assisted living where team members can provide regular housekeeping.
Aside from a negative impact on mental health, poor living conditions can also increase the risk of safety hazards; your loved ones may be in danger of tripping over clutter or due to inadequate lighting.
Issues with Managing Medications
Age-related issues tend to require medication to manage. However, our loved ones with memory problems – a common problem among the elderly – may forget to take their medications regularly. On the other hand, they may over-medicate, leading to dangerous complications.
It is crucial to spot this issue before it becomes a problem. You may want to watch their medicine intake and keep an eye out for sudden increases or decreases that may point to over or underdosing.
Feelings of Isolation
Social isolation is especially prevalent among older adults and can increase the risk of anxiety and depression. A healthy lifestyle would typically include engagement in hobbies or conversation with friends and family, all of which help boost the happiness and life satisfaction of our loved ones. However, when going out of the house and traveling to meet friends becomes too challenging, older adults become deprived of much-needed social interactions. Assisted living usually provides transportation services and group activities to encourage these adults to interact with friends, team members, and other residents.
These are just a few of the many tell-tale signs that older adults require a bit of additional assistance in their lives. If you are worried about your loved ones, it is best to have a transparent conversation with them regarding their current challenges and your concerns before inviting them to explore the option of assisted living.