With the senior population set to double over the next 30 years, more people than ever are exploring the possibility of assisted living.
Assisted living is typically a congregate living situation in which people over the age of 65 reside. Residents in assisted living can get the care they need to ensure their highest possible quality of life.
If you’re considering assisted living for your elderly mom, dad or other loved one, it’s important to know that not all places are created equal. Each assisted living situation offers its own unique blend of services, values, and levels of independence.
To make sure that your loved one ends up in an assisted living situation that’s perfectly suited to their needs and sensibilities, below, our team has provided a list of 7 key questions you should ask before making an assisted living commitment.
1. What is Your Staff to Resident Ratio?
More staff mean more opportunities to socialize, faster responses to emergencies, and more activities. That’s why we think it’s important to get an understanding of how many staff members there are for each resident living in the assisted living you’re considering.
Note that some assisted living situations may have just a handful of staff members but at the same time also have a small number of residents. Because of that, it’s important not to focus so much on volume as it is to focus on the overall ratio.
2. Are Team Members Available 24/7 to offer Assistance to Residents?
One of the primary reasons why people opt for assisted living is to make sure that they’re safe and have help available if they need it.
Slips, falls, and similar dangerous senior medical emergencies don’t keep a schedule. Because of that, it’s important that the assisted living you’re considering have people available to help around the clock.
Ask the place you’re considering if they offer around the clock care and how many staff members are on duty overnight.
3. How Do Living Spaces Work in the Assisted Living You are Considering?
Living situations can vary wildly between assisted living situations.
Some assisted living options have living spaces like dorm rooms lined up in a long hallway. In others, residents have their own private homes that are laid out across a campus. A third assisted living option is a smaller home-like setting, with private bedroom suites and shared living room, dining room and kitchen areas.
Getting an understanding of the space your loved one will be in and what rules those spaces are subject to (pets vs. no pets, smoking vs. no smoking, etc.) are all important considerations to ensure optimal comfort.
4. What Kind of Communal Spaces and Activities Do You Have?
It’s important as a senior that there are ample opportunities to socialize and have fun. That’s why asking about communal spaces and activities within an assisted living community is so important.
Many assisted living communities will have rooms where guests can get together to watch television or play board games. Others will offer classes in communal spaces that may include everything from knitting to yoga.
Understanding your loved one’s level of activity and how it matches up with a community’s level of activity can help you further filter through your assisted living options.
5. How Do Visits Work?
Does the assisted living you’re considering have visiting hours? Are residents within the facility welcome to have guests over whenever they’d like?
Depending on the dynamic you and your loved one have, the answers to those questions may be important. That last thing you’ll want is to be surprised by the fact that you can no longer enjoy evening visits with your mom or dad as soon as they move into assisted living.
In many cases, assisted living facilities that are strict on guest comings and goings will make certain allowances for special occasions. If you’re looking for a more hands-off visitor policy though, you’ll want to inquire before committing.
6. Do You Offer Transportation Services?
Just because seniors are getting on in age doesn’t mean that they don’t have places to be.
Things like family events, doctor’s visits, salon appointments and more are all activities seniors look forward to regularly. If seniors don’t have the means to travel outside of their assisted living community though, getting to these activities can be difficult.
Many assisted living communities remedy this issue by providing transportation in and around the community. Others leave arranging transportation to their residents.
If your loved one doesn’t drive and you don’t have the time to offer a consistent transportation solution, you’ll want to make sure that the assisted living you’re considering can help.
7. My Loved One Suffers From ______. How Can You Help?
At Arthur’s Senior Care, we understand that elderly people’s health concerns are as unique as their personalities. That’s why we offer a number of specialized care options for people with memory issues and other conditions.
If your loved one requires special support for their healthcare needs, it’s imperative that you make sure that the assisted living they’re considering is equipped to provide the help they need.
Wrapping Up 7 Questions to Ask When Touring Assisted Living Facilities
Assisted living can provide services that enable seniors to get the support they need while enjoying the independence they want.
Given the variety of assisted living options that are out there, it’s important that you do your diligence to find the perfect place for your loved one.
Arthur’s Senior Care is a living community owned and operated by ACR Homes. Residents of Arthur’s enjoy outstanding staff ratios, an exceptional setting and support for people with memory loss, and a number of specialized health services.
Want to learn more about the incredible quality of life Arthur’s Senior Care can help your loved one achieve? View our locations and virtually tour our properties today!