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Is Assisted Living for You?

By Heather Brown
June 05, 2015

“How Do I Know When Assisted Living Services Would Be Appropriate?”

How do you know when your aging parent or spouse needs this level of care? If the person is unable to provide for their own basic personal needs and there is concern for their safety living alone or fear they are not taking care of themselves, then it is time to look into your care options.

Home Care

Home care is an option for those adults who want to remain in their own homes and just need assistance with daily tasks. A nurse or caregiver oversees their care and reports to the patient’s doctor if they have any health concerns or problems that arise. Services are billed per hour and will depend on how many hours of service are needed per week.

Services provided include:

  • Personal care
  • Household cleaning
  • Shopping and errands
  • Transportation
  • Medication reminders

Advantages of At-Home Care

The advantages of at-home care are that they can remain in their own homes while having someone there to ensure their safety and that their needs are met. Seniors in this environment retain more of their independence and have control over their daily routine.


The disadvantages of this option may be that financially the care becomes overwhelming if the person requires 24 hour care and supervision. The cost varies from state-to-state and may be more or less than the examples in this list of long-term care costs by state.

Assisted Living

Assisted living communities are a good option for active seniors used to a more social environment. They offer access to health care  and emergency services  24 hours per day from on-site physicians and nursing staff. These communities are best for adults who prefer social environments and daily interactions with others.

Facilities often include:

  • a private apartment
  • beauty or barber shop
  • restaurant-style dining
  • laundry service
  • transportation
  • activities, events and trips


This option may not be right for someone who is used to being around family members. Homebodies may feel awkward in this type of setting preferring to be alone or opt out of activities.

With both of these options, the patient’s health care plan (including Medicare and Medicaid) may pay a percentage of the cost making care more affordable.

When deciding which option is best for you and your loved one, evaluate the cost with their preference for control over their environment and needs for security and socialization.



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