It is in the best interest of the elderly or their family members to decide how they live through their golden years. The decision to either stay safe and comfortable at home or live in an expensive, overpopulated and sometimes uncomfortable assisted living facility is usually tough especially if extra hands are not available to tender care to the aged at home. The following points should be considered.
Safety Should be a Priority
During the aging process, the elderly should not be put under conditions where they long for their families, do not feel safe and secure, or have their health challenged in any way. One very significant advantage of aging in place is that safety and healthy living conditions can be achieved at home because the home is considered everyone’s safe harbor; and with appropriate modifications, maximum comfort can be achieved at home.
On the other hand, the staff, nurses, and caregivers in most assisted living facilities are usually capable of providing only limited care and attention to their patients because these facilities are usually overpopulated with people of diverse abilities and disabilities. Wouldn’t it be unfair to abandon your aged loved ones in a place where they can’t get enough attention when they need it?
It is also common knowledge that as we age, our immune systems weaken and we become more susceptible to diverse infections and diseases. Most assisted living facilities are filled with people suffering from diverse kinds of ailments and diseases and a good number of these ailments are contagious. Having your older folks live within close proximity to people suffering from such infectious ailments exposes them to the risk of getting sick too.
According to an article in Aging Health, infection control remains a major challenge in many nursing homes. Ranging from unkempt care equipment to carelessness from the staff, the threat to the health of your elderly in these facilities are not just worth the trouble. In as much as the right facilities are made available in the home, aging in place remains the healthiest and safest option. You wouldn’t want your aged parents and grandparents exposed to health-threathening conditions by leaving them at the mercy of their already-weak immune systems when they could very much easily age in place without worrying about getting unnecessarily sick.
Independence is a very important attribute during aging. Being self-sufficient is very essential if emotional and mental health is to be maintained in the elderly. Aging in place allows them get all the help they can get and still maintain the sense of independence they desire.
The Health Advocate Homecare advices that the elderly does not need to be constantly reminded of what they have become incapable of doing nor how much help they need. They desrve independence and according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, this independence has more to do with their ability to have a say over the activities in their lives and also be able to participate meaningfully in their communities.
Without doubt, no other place can be compared with the home in terms of familiar comfort. Breaking from the familiarities of one’s home isn’t something anyone – even the elderly, would enjoy doing. Leaving home may be stressful and unpleasant for them because further changes would certainly be made to the order of their daily activities for them to fit into a facility’s schedule. As an example, they may not be able to keep up with their hobbies which can in one way or the other affect their aging process. They may not also be able to eat or go to bed when they love to.
Aging in place affords them the opportunity to grow with their homes, their loved ones and the surrounding they are used to. There are a good number of products in the market that can be installed in the home to make it suitable for aging as they provide maximum comfort and convenience with respect to the lifestyles of the elderly.
A majority of the elderly choose to make these adjustments quite early in their homes in order to get acquainted to these products as well as increase their efficiencies.
It is no doubt that cost goes a long way in influencing the decision of where one spends his/her old age irrespective of the fact that comfort is also a very important factor to consider. From all angles, aging in place is the most cost effective option for the elderly because additional costs incurred in the home are very little compared with those incurred at an assisted living facility.
From the explanation given by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, most elderly persons are homeowners and do not have need to make mortgage expenses. If however, they decide to spend their later days in a facility, they might need to put their homes on the market which more often than never would require major revamping. But putting the cost of revamping the old house before it can be sold and that incurred in an assisted living facility into consideration, it would be extravagant not to opt for aging in place.
Instead of channeling funds into making an old house attractive on the market or paying the exorbitant fees that come with nursing facilities, such funds can be channeled into making the home safer and more suitable for the lifestyle of the elderly.
Although assisted living facilities allow regular visits from family members and loved ones, it still does not make up for the comfort and love experienced when living with them. Most elderly people want to be around their families all the time and not older people like them. Some enjoy the company of their grandchildren, neighbors and people in their communities. Others have grown used to the activities and people around them such that taking them away from home would make them lonely and unhappy. And I bet you, loneliness and unhappiness always turn out toxic to the emotional and mental wellbeing of older people.