Options for aging in place

A senior living transition can be a complicated and involved process, which is why many family caregivers/individuals in need of services are seeking residential care options that allow for “aging-in-place.”
After assessing your parents' health, their maneuverability and their living situation, you've come to the decision that something?either something major or, at the moment, minor?has to be done. But what, exactly? There's no one-size-fits-all solution to the question of senior living arrangements. Fortunately, there are plenty of options. Here are a few to discuss with your parents:
  • Your parents stay in their own home, but you help them modify it for safety and ease. That may include moving their bedroom downstairs or installing a stairlift, modifying their bathroom or kitchen, etc. If you're doing some remodeling, go ahead and widen doorways to at least 36-inches for wheel chair and walker access.

  • Your parents stay at home but you augment it with daily care including: part-time home care professionals, a live-in family member or friend, or a paid live-in care person. You or another family member may cover nights or weekends. Some families choose to work with a home care agency, making arrangements to receive necessary services without relocating. On the whole, home care agencies provide a sliding scale of choices to meet the simplest needs to the most complex, following consumers through the care continuum from non-medical services such as light housekeeping, transportation, or meal preparation (often desirable/helpful to seniors who live alone, or for those who may be the primary caregiver to a spouse with care needs of his/her own), to the more advanced medical needs of consumers with terminal illnesses who may require/desire hospice care. Not all agencies provide advanced medical services (wound care, IV therapy, etc.), but many seniors would rather transition to using a different agency than move out of their homes.

  • Your parent or parents move in with you or another family member. You may alternate weeks or months if your parents can be moved without too much upset or difficulty.

  • You investigate various living arrangements including moving to a smaller more manageable home, condo or apartment, or living closer to family members. Other options include senior housing, continuing care homes, assisted living, group homes. Depending on their health needs, a nursing home or memory care home might be most appropriate.

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