It’s an unfortunate truth that as we age, our bodies and minds start to deteriorate. We may not be able to do the things we used to enjoy or even take care of ourselves as we did before. This can cause a lot of stress for you and the family members who will need to care for you, especially if they are also taking care of children or have a demanding job.
You might feel guilty about considering assisted living for your loved ones because you don’t want them to feel like you are abandoning them. Still, it is important to remember that these assisted living facilities offer amenities and services designed specifically with seniors in mind. Even still, the decision to move an aging loved one into assisted living is never easy.
No matter how well you prepare, there will always be times that you feel alone and overwhelmed by the process. Here are five signs it might be time for your family member to live in a senior care facility.
1. The Loved One Needs Help With Everyday Activities
If your loved one is having trouble with basic tasks like eating and getting dressed, it might be time to consider assisted living. Assisted living facilities provide care that includes help with daily life activities such as bathing, grocery shopping or meal preparation for your loved one so they can stay in their own home longer. This will save you a lot of stress and time while still allowing you some peace of mind knowing they’re in capable hands.
Catered Living at Ocean Pines notes that if your loved one needs help with more than just basic tasks and is experiencing memory loss or confusion on their own medication routine, they may need full-time care in an assisted living facility where staff members are available 24 hours per day. If this seems overwhelming, you might want to consider hiring a caregiver to help with these tasks.
2. Your Loved One Can’t Walk Independently
Your loved one may also need to move into assisted living if they can’t walk or use the stairs independently. This is critical because seniors who have complications with mobility need to be monitored closely. This is a common reason seniors move into assisted living because it can be hard for them to navigate up the stairs or walk long distances without assistance.
This creates safety risks in their home, so it may not work well if they live alone, regardless of whether other family members or friends are there to help them. It may be hard to find someone to accompany them and help them regularly, so assisted living may be the best option for their own safety. Taking this step will also help to preserve their independence and dignity.
3. They Need More Than 25 to 30 Minutes of Supervision
If your loved one needs more than 25 to 30 minutes of supervision at a time, it may be time to consider an assisted living facility. While supervision for seniors is important for maintaining independence, it’s important to know when enough is enough. The average person needs about 25 to 30 minutes of supervision a day, but it can be more than that for seniors. This includes the time they need help brushing their teeth or getting dressed in the morning and evening.
If your loved one requires more than this, it may be time to consider assisted living facilities as an option, especially if you’re also having trouble caring for them on top of everything else. You will also want to examine the level of activity your loved one can do on their own. If they are unable to provide basic self-care, then you should consider assisted living as an option.
4. You’re Spending Most of Your Free Time Providing Care
Taking care of a loved one with a chronic care condition or in need of close supervision due to aging can be very time-consuming. Whether the person needs to have someone there all day or if they need assistance for certain tasks, it’s not uncommon for people in this situation to spend most of their free time providing care instead of looking after other responsibilities.
If you’re spending more than 30 hours per week caring for your loved one on top of everything else and feel like you are neglecting yourself and other family members, assisted living may be the way to go. It may be difficult to realize when it’s time to stop taking care of a loved one in your own home, but assisted living offers privacy and freedom from worrying about the needs of your loved one 24/7.
5. Their Health Has Been Declining and They Are Forgetting Who You Are
If your loved one’s health is declining and they frequently forget who you are, assisted living may be the perfect solution. Most assisted living facilities have medical experts who are on-site 24 hours and offer round-the-clock care. The staff also has experience handling seniors with conditions like dementia, which means less stress on family members. You can visit your loved one regularly to have lunch with them or chat in their room.
Prioritize Your Loved One’s Well-Being
Nothing matters more than the well-being of your loved one. They can’t stay in your home when you know they’re not happy and need more care than you can provide them. If you see any of these signs, it’s time to consider assisted living as soon as possible so they can live comfortably and age well.