As people age they often require increased assistance in everyday activities. Decisions on what is the best type of care for a senior can be difficult and often complicated. Here is help on how to decide between assisted living or senior care in their home.
The choices between assisted living professionally at a nursing home or relying on care in the home can be an agonizing choice for the family of a senior. There are pros and cons to both options and they should be carefully considered before an arrangement is in place.
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The Costs of Senior Care Options
When planning for our retirement, most of us allocate money into a 401K or another savings program to take advantage of tax write-offs and to make sure we will be able to enjoy a nice lifestyle when we are no longer working from 9 to 5. We imagine using the money to supplement our monthly social security checks to enjoy vacations and other leisure activities while taking advantage of all those senior discounts.
The financial company advertisements assist us with the visions of enjoying gardening, sailing and relaxing during our retirement years. They don't show the other side of the reality which includes health problems which accompany aging. Along with a longer life comes an increased chance for developing an age-related disease, such as Alzheimer's Disease or Parkinson's Disease. Alzheimer's Disease is now the sixth leading cause of death, according to the Alzheimer's Association. As we all witnessed from watching former President Ronald Reagan battle the disease, a senior with Alzheimer's Disease can live for many years, while requiring a caregiver to assist with their daily living. As Medicare does not pay for long-term senior care (only stays of 100 days or less in a nursing home for rehabilitation after a hospital stay, with doctor pre-approval, with only the first 20 days paid at 100% by Medicare), the costs can quickly add-up.
Remember, Medicare does not pay for long-term care, which means to effectively plan for your senior care needs, you must plan for where you want to receive the care and save to pay for the care services either in a nursing home or in your home. While less than 7% of Americans over the age of 70 currently have long-term care insurance, it is predicted that more than 50% of Americans will have long-term care insurance in twenty years, as people witness their parents burn through their life savings to pay for their senior care needs. Research the options and manage your investments to allow you to choose your preferred senior care and look for unbiased, third-party information as a credible senior care resource
Maintain Independent Living Status Through the Use of Senior Care Services
While they shouldn't exert themselves in the heat, there are plenty of opportunities for seniors to have some summertime fun. With a little creativity and thoughtful planning, your loved one can enjoy the warmer weather.
Make new memories, and reinforce old ones. Spending time outdoors can be healthy and refreshing. Ask seniors their favorite way to spend summer years ago and re-enact that experience. Pack a simple picnic and head to their beloved neighborhood park. Pick up your loved one and bring them to a grandchild's baseball game. Take a slow stroll by a nearby beach or lake. Because many seniors are early to rise, you can catch the sunrise while enjoying a cup of coffee together.
Visit a museum or attend a cultural event. As we age, there is a greater risk for dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Take a break from the warm weather with some indoor fun.
Explore a local museum or art gallery. Buy tickets to an afternoon performing arts show or head to the theater and take in a movie. Visit the library. If reading is now difficult for your loved one, read to them or pick up audio books. The air conditioning in each of these buildings will be a relief on a hot day!