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What is Independent Living?

What is Independent Living?

If you are searching for “What Is Independent Living?” while trying to understand the differences between the different types of retirement homes, this article should definitely help!

No doubt about it, we all will age and when it starts to happen it is time to maybe start thinking about changing our living arrangements. Sometimes responsibilities can become a little too much, and it could mean that our loved ones are alone and without a way to get around. Then there is the loneliness, which implies that they could use some friendship with those who are their own age. An independent living facility may be the answer but, depending on your loved ones circumstances, a retirement home may be better.

In order to deal with the stress that comes with the changes that they will encounter, you need to ensure that they can continue with their independence while the settle into a new home. It is a good idea to think ahead and begin your planning. This gives you and your loved one the time and space to deal with it.

What Exactly Does Independent Living Consist Of?

Independent living is plainly a housing arrangement for seniors who are the age of 55 or older. Housing for seniors will vary in types such as free standing homes, retirement communities, and apartment living. Senior housing will have a friendly atmosphere, more compact, and they are designed to let seniors get around more easily and all landscape and/or maintenance is done for them.

Typically, communities for independent living will offer its residents numerous activities and programs, other services as well as amenities. Independent living housing often has a recreational center and/or clubhouse that will allow seniors to interact with other seniors. Independent living may also have community participation in movie nights, arts and crafts, holiday gatherings, and other types of activities.

The community may also have facilities like fitness centers, swimming pools, golf courses, a variety of clubs and groups. There are other services such as on-site spas, daily meals, housekeeping, laundry services and barber or beauty shops.

After all, independent living facilities are focused on those individuals who are 55 and older and are designed and created to give an atmosphere of independent living, but with assistance available when it is needed. Hiring in-home aids is also a good option for those who feel that they may need it.

How Is Independent Living Any Different Than Other Senior Living?

The main difference between other senior housing and independent living is the level that a resident may need assistance in. If the resident needs around the clock assistance with activities such as bathing, using the bathroom, eating, getting dressed, or have certain medical needs.

Independent Living, Is It Right For Me?

Whenever a senior has to make a change in their living arrangements, it may feel as if their world is caving in, like they are losing all of their independence. Nevertheless, independent living is just that, it is all about making it that much more easy to stay independent. Knowing your loved ones limitations are keeping them from leading a regular life and facing that they could have quality life with a little help will allow them to be independent longer.

To Help You Out, Answer These 4 Questions:

Is your loved one keeping their home up as good, as I use to or is it getting harder for them to do?   

Keeping their home up and running is part of their pride, but when age sets in it can become a little overwhelming, becoming more of a burden. For example, they may have a home that has a yard that needs constant attention or extra rooms that aren’t needed but still have to be dusted and cleaned every now and then. There may be an issue accessing their home because of stairs or steep inclines like driveways, which keeps them from getting out as much as they want, which leaves your loved ones the feeling of isolation.

There may even be the possibility that their neighborhood isn’t as safe as it used to be, which prevents them from walking like they did before, or prevents them from getting out entirely. They could eradicate some of these issues by hiring help or by remodeling. If they are looking for independent living without all the stress of upkeep, then they may need an independent living facility.

Have they been connecting with their friends and family as much as they would like too? 

Those individuals who are isolated will have a greater risk of depression and/or mental health issues. This could happen for different reasons, like becoming mobile which making getting around harder and/or not being able to drive themselves as much as they used to.

Maybe their neighbors and/or friends don’t have time to come around anymore, or they just don’t feel safe in their neighborhood. Even though being able to send messages and chat using the internet is convenient, it will never replace face-to-face contact.

Independent living facilities will give them a network of peers that their social life has lacked, as well as provide activities like arts & crafts, field trips, sports and more.

Is getting around getting harder for your loved one?

Your loved one is in a home that is located where driving is harder for them to get out and socialize or visiting family and friends. If driving is troublesome and they have to use public transportation or it is hard for friends and family to get to their home. Maybe even have trouble getting to their doctor’s appointments.

Independent living facilities will have on-site amenities and most will offer options for transportation for outside activities.

Is their health declining (and/or their spouses)?

Take into consideration their health condition and understand what their health may be like in the future is a vital measure that will need to be taken into account. If the current condition of their health can let them know what to expect down the road, like a condition that will over time.

These conditions allow for planning in advance which is a wise thing to do. It isn’t just their health to take into consideration about either, their spouse will need the same thing and you should plan out their living arrangements together for the future.

Ask Yourselves The Following Questions:

  • Do they both still manage their daily living activities such as laundry, bathing, cooking meals, etc?
  • Do you both or one of your loved ones have the ability to manage their finances?
  • Do they both manage their medications and keep up with doctor’s appointments?

Independent living is for those who just need a little assistance with daily living. Understanding what your loved ones need will help to determine what is best for them and their future.

Independent Living In Peoria, Arizona

There will be a time in our lives where having a little help when we need it will give us peace of mind. Having peace of mind isn’t just for your loved ones, it is for your friends and family knowing that your loved ones have trained staff to help with what they need. Having their own apartment with trained and experienced staff around makes retirement years enhanced with socialization and activities.

If it is time for a change, contact us at SLS Communities about what location is best for your loved one. Give us a call today at 623-400-1468 or schedule a free tour of our independent living facility in Peoria, Arizona. Make sure you download our independent living checklist.


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