Does my loved one need assisted living?
Is my loved one successfully living independently? And if not, what’s next?
At some point in our lives, we may consider these questions and ask ourselves – how would I know?
The holiday season offers an opportunity to consider this. During holidays, we see family and friends we may not have seen in some time, making changes more noticeable. We may visit a loved one’s home that we have not been to in a while and notice changes in their environment.
Fortunately, there is a concept called Activities of Daily Living (ADL) that can help in considering the question of successfully living independently. This concept was developed in the 1950’s and is still relevant today. It consists of a 6-point system, and how well one navigates each of these points will help determine if a greater level of care is needed AND, what that level of care may be – independent living with services, assisted living, skilled care, or memory care.
- Bathing and showering
- Personal hygiene and grooming
- Toilet hygiene
- Functional mobility/transferring
For example, a refrigerator might be full of expired food. Or there may be more pre-packaged or convenience meals being used which could indicate an inability to cook or a nutritional problem. Bathing may be a concern if a lack of good hygiene is noticed; wearing soiled clothing might indicate difficulty in dressing. Each ADL has a value of 1 point, the higher the points earned the greater the possibility the person has a need for additional support or care to accomplish daily living.
Today’s technology makes it is easier than ever to research senior living options in the comfort of your home. With a simple click of a button using Google, Safari, or any other search engine type in senior living [city] and begin a review of various web sites. Most web sites offer virtual tours, sample menus, monthly activity calendars and so much more. After narrowing a list down of potential sites, the next step is to schedule an on-site tour with a housing representative. Nothing beats an in-person tour to see firsthand what the community has to offer, speak with residents, and get questions answered!