Older adult couple cheers their glasses As they enjoy a meal at their senior living community

Why Seniors are Choosing Community Living

Inspīr Senior Living Team

As we think about the future, we often dream about where we will retire or how we’ll spend our later years with family and loved ones. What many people fail to think about is what their plan will be when daily life tasks become a little bit harder. Many older adults need additional support as they age. In fact, according to the National Council on Aging, older adults are disproportionately affected by chronic conditions such as arthritis, diabetes and heart disease. Nearly 95% of older adults have at least one chronic condition and nearly 80% have two or more. While chronic conditions are extremely common among older adults, they can limit a person’s ability to perform daily activities and cause them to lose their independence. This is just one example of the struggles older adults face as they age--other adults struggle with a decline in mobility or cognitive functioning.

As older adults plan for their retirement, it’s also important to plan for their long-term health. Many older adults see two options when thinking about their long-term living plans. One option is to age in place and the other is to physically move to a senior living community. According to a 2021 AARP survey, more than three quarters of adults 50 and older reported wanting to stay in their homes or their communities as they age. This data tells us that for many older adults, the importance is on community, not necessarily the physical home.

Choosing Where to Age

Choosing between a senior living community and aging in place in your family home is a really difficult choice. This is a complex decision that depends on your own individual situation and may look different for each person. However, knowing the facts can help you make the best choice for you and your family. According to DailyCaring, these tips can help you find out what works best for you:

Figure out how much help you need. Before you make any decisions about the future, it’s important to assess how much help you already need and what that might look like in the future. First, make a list of everything you need help with on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Next, think about how much help your family and friends can provide, but be sure to stay realistic. After looking at these lists, it should be easy to identify if you’re getting enough support or if you could use more

Understand the pros and cons. Before you can choose between a senior living community or in-home care, it’s important to understand how they work.

  • In-home care. In-home care (also called private duty care) is hired to come into your home to help you with activities of daily living. This includes helping you get dressed, help with compression socks, transportation to appointments or errands, help with preparing meals and daily hygiene. The pros to hiring in-home care is that you get individualized care that will meet your needs and can be adapted as your needs change. Older adults also benefit from companionship and relationship building. However, in-home care also has its cons. Depending on how much care you need on a daily/weekly basis, the costs can be really high. There’s also a potential for social isolation which can lead to depression, cognitive decline and other health issues. Finding a replacement caregiver at short-notice can be really difficult for agencies, too. For example, if there’s a snow storm or family emergency and your caregiver calls off, would you be safe without them there?
  • Senior living communities. Most senior living communities offer a wide range of care options, from seniors who live mostly independently to those who need a high level of care. Services like meal options, transportation, maintenance, housekeeping, and utilities are usually included in the monthly fee. The pros to senior living include access to 24/7 care and security, options for social interaction and access to medical care. Family members don’t usually need to worry about hiring private-duty care since many communities offer higher levels of support when they’re needed. Senior living communities also give families peace of mind knowing their loved one is in a safe and nurturing environment. While senior living is a great option, it has some cons, too. Staff changes can be common at senior living communities and it may take some time to adjust to a group living environment if that’s something you’re not used to.


Why Seniors are Choosing Community Living

The decision to move to a senior living community can be a very emotional process for many older adults. However, the benefits seem to outweigh the cons for a lot of aging adults. According to Medium Magazine, these are some of the reasons why older adults are choosing senior living over aging in place:

  • Ability to downsize. As we get older, our homes can feel bigger and present more of a burden. Many older adults like the idea of worry-free living without the tasks of landscaping, maintenance or paying for utilities.
  • Sense of community. Older adults who live alone are at an increased risk of loneliness and depression. Senior living communities provide an opportunity for seniors to try new things and make friends who they can relate to.
  • Access to services. Most senior living communities offer amenities that older adults wouldn’t otherwise be able to access. These might include fitness centers, swimming pools, libraries, game rooms, restaurants and shopping areas.
  • Increased safety. Safety is often a number one priority for seniors and their family members. Senior communities usually offer an emergency security system such as an emergency pendant or call button. In addition, many senior communities are gated and provide a 24/7 security team.
  • Continuum of care. For seniors who are looking for a one stop shop, it’s best to consider CCRCs (continuing care retirement communities). These communities offer independent living, assisted living, memory care and nursing all in one location. This means residents can remain in the same community even when their health needs change.

At Inspīr Senior Living we provide residences that embrace enhanced wellness and immersive experiences, our communities offer residents a lifestyle that meets and exceeds everything they’ve envisioned for their lives.


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