Independent living communities are often the best senior housing option for active adults who want built-in community and privacy and do not require active levels of assistance. Independent living community staff will take care of the grounds and common areas, and housekeeping may be an option in some locations, but you won’t receive assistance with daily living such as ensuring medications are managed, help with bathroom or bathing needs or regular assistance with mobility.
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Assisted living is a type of care for older adults who need help with normal daily activities that’s provided in a residential facility. To best understand what assisted living is, it can be helpful to define what it’s not. It is not a nursing home or a setting where residents need round-the-clock medical care. Instead, seniors in assisted living receive personal care and assistance with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, grooming and toileting so that they’re able to live as independently as possible.
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A memory care community is a residential care facility or wing or unit of a residential care facility that is designed specifically to ac the needs of people who have Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia’s.
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Nursing homes, also called skilled nursing facilities or convalescent homes, serve anyone who requires preventive, therapeutic and/or rehabilitative nursing care. Nursing homes provide residential care for people who don’t require hospitalization but need 24-hour care they can’t get at home. Some nursing homes are set up like a hospital with staff members providing medical care. Nursing homes also provide a wide range of other services.
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For many families, this is where adult day care comes in. It’s a service that can keep your loved one busy and engaged, allowing you to keep working or to take a periodic break from caregiving. Elder day care can be a godsend if you can’t afford full-time in-home care and your loved one:   

  • Is frail or has dementia or other medical conditions

  • Can no longer structure their own daily activities

  • Finds it difficult to initiate activities like reading, conversation or watching television

  • Is isolated and lonely or desires peer interaction

  • Is anxious or depressed and needs social and emotional support

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Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) are multi-level care facilities that combine residential accommodations with health services for older adults. The goal of a CCRC is to allow residents to receive the appropriate level of care across a continuum, from independent living to assisted living to skilled nursing care, as their health status changes and without having to move out of the retirement community.
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