May 6, 2015

Have you ever wondered: what is a senior living community?

For Adult Children
The Senior Care Experts at Ecumenical Retirement Community

This question: “What is a senior living community?” is usually followed by “…and is a senior living community right for me?” We hear both questions often enough that we were inspired to create a post that would help to answer the question, and also help you understand what kinds of services are available to seniors.

What is a senior living community?

The term “senior living community” is very general and can be used to describe the wide range of lifestyle choices that are available to seniors. A “senior living community” could really describe anything from a village that offers independent-living-style cottages to a nursing home offering skilled nursing to the frailest of seniors.

Chances are, if you’re at the point where you’re beginning to research a senior living community for yourself or a family member, you could benefit from understanding the various levels of care that we in the senior living industry take for granted that everyone knows.

What is independent living?

Independent living is just what it sounds like – seniors living independently in their own homes. Seniors living in “independent living” enjoy the benefits of a maintenance-free lifestyle with activities and social events available to them within the community, but also the freedom and privacy of living independently in their own homes. When the time comes, these seniors may choose to move into a higher level of care like assisted living or personal care, or may choose to age in place with the assistance of in-home care.

What is assisted living?

In Pennsylvania, there are state regulations that determine the subtle differences between assisted living and personal care homes. Ecumenical Retirement Community offers personal care services. Personal care services often include assistance with the activities of daily living (ADLs) like bathing or dressing, but the idea is that residents in this level of care are still able to participate in social activities like meals and entertainment with their fellow residents.

What is memory care?

Often, seniors who suffer from Alzheimer’s or other dementia-related illnesses require specialized care for their conditions. This care can range, depending on the severity of the symptoms, from early memory support services to secure neighborhoods designed to assist late-stage dementia sufferers. Ecumenical offers customized memory support programs that are designed to adapt and change with the needs of the resident.

Short- and long-term rehabilitation

Rehabilitation services can be either short- or long-term, depending on the circumstances of the individual. Whether the person is coping with a chronic condition or recovering from an illness or a surgery, rehabilitation services can be helpful. Ecumenical Retirement Community offers restorative care services, including customized programs that are designed to restore our residents to their best selves.

Skilled nursing

Skilled nursing is the type of care that we think of when we think of a nursing home. Skilled nursing facilities offer 24-hour nursing supervision for residents who are in need of it, and often offer rehabilitation services, as necessary, for patients who need occupational, physical or speech therapy.

While not every senior living community offers every level of care available, there are many that do. Some offer care levels through rehabilitation, while others offer skilled nursing and even hospice care.

To find out more about the different levels of care available at Ecumenical Retirement Community, contact us today.

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