What to Look for in an Assisted Living Community

July 14, 2016

Once you’ve decided to help a senior loved one move to a retirement community, memory care, or assisted living community, you’ve got an extensive choice – which community is best? Every community is different, so knowing what to look for when you set up a tour is important. Here are some factors to check into:

Caring Staff 

Be sure to watch for how the community staff interacts with residents. Everyone from the administrative assistants to nurses and dining attendants works with seniors on a daily basis. You want your loved one surrounded by knowledgeable, helpful individuals who offer professional experience and compassion. A big part of senior communities is the people, so ensuring your loved one is comfortable with the staff is important.


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Great Food 

One of the many benefits of living in a senior living community is access to excellent food. Seniors residing in retirement communities can access healthy, delicious items for every meal. Check out the dining room at the communities you visit.

Are people eating their food with smiles? Are the residents interacting over their dinners? What food options are offered? Most senior communities work with nutritionists to create unique location-based meal plans that fit the area’s tastes and provide important nutrients. You can even ask if your loved one’s favorite dish is ever on the menu. If other residents would enjoy it, you may make a request and have that dish in the future.

exercise, seniors, Edgewood Living, senior classActivities like exercise offer seniors a chance to visit.


Engaging Activities 

Another awesome part of living among other seniors is interacting with the residents. Communities encourage friendships by facilitating fun activities. Exercise classes unite people interested in staying fit or rehabilitating after falls or surgeries. Off-campus trips to museums or grocery stores offer ways to run errands together or visit a nearby attraction.

In-house movie nights, game sessions, and concerts also provide fun ways for residents to spend time and get to know their neighbors. When you visit, ask for a community event calendar to see all the options available at a potential community. Don’t hesitate to ask about an activity your senior loved one would enjoy.

Safety Precautions 

Many older people move to senior communities because they want peace of mind. Dementia patients can move to memory care apartments within a secure unit to prevent wandering. The bathrooms in senior communities should feature safety handles near the toilet and in the tub and shower. The hallways should be wide enough for wheelchairs and other mobility assistive devices to pass through easily.

Look in the rooms to identify call buttons or pendants for seniors needing to talk to a nurse or staff member. In-unit kitchens should be equipped with a fire extinguisher and smoke detector. The community’s private and common areas should offer amenities your senior wouldn’t likely have at home.

In the right community, your loved one will flourish. These safe environments promote the comforts of home with extra assistance for those who need the support.

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