Moving to a life plan community can yield countless benefits, however, there are many factors that play into this decision.
Over the past year, COVID-19 has presented an additional layer of considerations. If you or a loved one is unsure if the time is right to explore senior living options, here are five thoughtful questions to ask:
- Do You Live Alone?
Living alone can bring about a number of safety concerns, including the possibility of slips and falls. Fast access to help in the aftermath of a slip or fall is critical for swift recovery.
Some children of older adults choose to invest in monitored security systems for their parents for potential safety incidents — like slips, falls and other medical emergencies. While these systems are highly beneficial, they’re only effective as long as the device is worn and used at a time when it’s needed most.
Safety, security and maintaining better quality of life are all things that can be easily compromised when living alone. Living in a community where there is fast access to medical care and caring professionals who are always there to check in on you can make a world of difference.
- Are Your Medical Care Needs Escalating?
The more medications you need to take on a daily basis and the more direct care and supervision you require, the more you stand to benefit from moving into a community where care is always available. Life plan communities offer varying levels of care for residents at different stages of health.
It’s not just about the need for medication, but also the need to drive or arrange transportation to appointments to monitor your health. Living in a life plan community ensures convenient access to healthcare and medical treatment onsite, as well as to transportation to off-site medical appointments for residents who prefer to see their own physicians.
- Do You Feel Lonely?
Social fulfillment is a cornerstone of successful living at any age. An active and thriving social life helps to fight off boredom and depression and increases overall life satisfaction.
Living in a life plan community provides abundant scheduled opportunities for socialization, along with plenty of social areas where you can make new friends, enjoy quiet conversation, play games or simply enjoy the view — all ways to reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness. Even amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Ohio Living communities have adapted wholeheartedly to keep the safety of all residents a top priority.
- Is Maintaining Your Home More of a Burden than a Joy?
Four-season care and maintenance of a home can be a monumental task at any age. While we are committed to defying the stereotypes associated with aging and firmly believe you are capable of doing so, that doesn’t mean you necessarily want to continue maintaining a home year after year.
Once these tasks become painful or you find yourself disinterested in cleaning and maintaining your home, it is time to consider downsizing to something smaller. There’s no doubt that you love your home. There are many memories within those walls. But you can take the memories with you in photographs, letters and even videos. That more than makes up for letting go of the cleaning, vacuuming, dusting, painting, leaf raking, snow shoveling, lawn mowing, landscaping and so many other tasks throughout the year.
- Are You Being Challenged?
For some living at home alone, the only real challenge they routinely face is that of boredom. The act of setting and accomplishing goals is an important part of living a full and active life – regardless of age. It’s something that humans need in order to feel excited and feel as if they are growing and accomplishing new things.
In addition, an aging mind is kept sharp by learning new skills. "It seems it is not enough just to get out and do something – it is important to get out and do something that is unfamiliar and mentally challenging, and that provides broad stimulation mentally and socially," says Denise Park, psychological scientist and lead researcher of a challenging mental acuity study.
Making the Decision
Answering “yes” to one or more of these questions doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s time to move out of your home today, but it does mean that it might be time to start thinking about it. Ultimately, only you can decide if you’re ready to make the move from your home into a life plan community.
If you’ve made the decision to explore your options, the next step is to choose a life plan community that will meet your needs. Ohio Living life plan communities are devoted to providing a supportive environment that will allow you to experience fulfillment of your social, intellectual, physical and spiritual needs.