Old age is often associated with moving into a clustered old-age home or struggling in your own home, living alone. Do you know there is an alternative? Presenting senior living homes.
What is it?
Senior living homes are specially designed housing complexes with individual apartments and/or villas, to meet the needs of senior citizens. All facilities like – cooking, housekeeping, laundry, entertainment, medical care, and assisted living requirements – are all available within the housing society and is provided by the society itself. A resident can choose if he/she wants to avail these facilities as and when needed.
Though senior living homes (also known) as retirement villages are quite common and popular in the west, here in India, there is a misconception that senior living homes are similar to restrictive old-age homes. However, the truth is far from that.
Here, in today’s guide, we illustrate the differences between the two by highlighting nine major differentiating factors that you can find at senior living homes and not at old-age homes.
#1: Senior Living Homes offer Independence and an Active Lifestyle
Most old-age homes are quite restrictive when it comes to what residents can do. There are schedules – meal times, entertainment times, nap hours, and more. Seniors are limited and feel like they have lost their independence.
On the other hand, senior living homes provide residents with complete independence. There are no rigorous schedules. You can do what you want when you feel like doing it. Go for a walk, catch a game of volleyball with your buddies, swim a few laps in the pool, or just stay in your home and relax. The choice is all yours.
#2: Senior Living Homes offer Round-the-clock Top-notch Security
Senior living homes are monitored 24 x 7 by CCTV cameras in public areas as well as security guards. This means you don’t have to worry about burglaries, intruders, or even medical emergencies. You know help is right at hand when you need it.
#3: Senior Living Homes are Continuous Care Communities
This is one of the biggest perks of senior living homes. You can choose the type of care you would like to receive. Independent living, care at home (for dressing, grooming, bathing, and other tasks) or assisted living (in-home caregivers for seniors with a chronic condition, trained nursing staff, on-call doctors and more).
Most old-age homes don’t provide assisted living facilities. If the senior requires special medical care, then old-age home require residents to be shifted elsewhere mostly to a hospital. At senior living homes, you continue to receive medical care, right at your individual unit, if needed.
#4: Senior Living Homes offer Home-like Settings with Privacy and Freedom
As the name implies, a Senior Living Home is just like your regular home, but with a whole bunch of valuable amenities and lifestyle upgrades.
On the other hand, an old-age home is like a hostel for seniors. You are limited in what you can do and when you can do. Most old-age homes provide seniors with a bed and a cupboard at max to store their belongings. Old-age homes have shared bathrooms and toilets, and communal style bedrooms with rows and rows of beds.
In a senior living home, you get an individual housing unit that you own. You can get to design and decorate your interiors just like you would do at home. Senior living homes have individual bathrooms, toilets, dining room, kitchens, bedrooms, and even guest rooms for your children and grandchildren.
You continue to enjoy the privacy and freedom of a home while living in a supportive community.
#5: Senior Living Homes help you stay connected with your Family Just Like Before
When seniors move to an old-age home, they do so with a heavy heart. This is because it feels like they are putting an end to their current lifestyle. They can no longer have pets, or host children and grandchildren. They can meet their family and friends only during visiting hours.
At senior living homes, you are essentially purchasing an apartment. This means you can host your children, grandchildren, and other family members when they come to visit you. You can cook for them, play with them, get them to use the facilities offered by the community – above all, create long-lasting memories.
Your home acts like a weekend/vacation getaway for your children and grandchildren. They can spend their holidays with you. This way, you continue to stay bonded and connected with your family just like before.
#6: Senior Living Homes offer Age-friendly Amenities and Design
Senior living homes are designed, keeping in mind the specific requirements of seniors. Anti-skid tiles to prevent falls that occur with age, easy-reach coloured light and night switches, emergency response unit that alert support staff immediately, arthritis-friendly bathroom fittings, grab rails, lifts, are some of the senior-friendly design features.
Simply put, a senior living home offers the comforts of a home, with added functionality and design to suit the needs of seniors.
#7: Senior Living Homes help Senior Age with Pride, Dignity, and Companionship
When you grow old, it may feel like you are losing grip on your life. When you move into an old-age home, it feels like you no longer have any say in your daily choices.
A senior living home lets you age with pride, dignity, and companionship. You continue to retain control over your life. You get to decide how you want to spend your golden years while building companionships with similarly-aged peers.
#8: Senior Living Homes allow you to live your Golden Years in the Best Possible Way
Very often, there is a misconception that seniors are boring and do nothing than watch dramas on TV. A senior living home breaks this myth. In a senior living home, there are plenty of opportunities to build your skills and hobbies in your retirement years.
Whether it’s learning to play a musical instrument, taking up swimming, gardening with peers, or more senior living homes help you get the most out of your golden years. There is no time to feel bored or lonely. Your retirement years emerge as the best second innings of your life, helping you reap the fruits of the years of hard work.
#9: Above all, Senior Living Homes are a Choice, while Old-age Homes are a Limitation
Simply put, senior living homes are a choice that you take. It gives you the choice to decide what you want to do in your retirement years, how do you want to spend it and above all, helps you age with contentment, happiness, and pride.
Still, need convincing, let these numbers do the talking.
Ashiana Housing, a leading builder, specializing in kid-cerntric homes, comfort homes and senior-living homes, recently surveyed senior residents in Delhi and NCR. The survey interviewed 300 residents, 150 of whom reside in an Ashiana Senior Living community, with the rest living in group/independent housing units in Delhi and NCR.
The survey polled respondents on their quality of living, health conditions, access to medical treatment, and more. Here are the results:
49% of Ashiana residents stated that they had a very good quality of life, while only 13% of seniors living in group/independent housing units agreed that they lived a very good quality of life.
41% of Ashiana senior living residents revealed that they enjoy a positive and meaningful time in their retirement years. Only 10% of other residents stated that their retirement was meaningful and positive.
52% of Ashiana residents are satisfied with their health. The other group, the number was 40% for health quality.
32% of Ashiana’s senior living home residents stated that they don’t require any medical attention, while 12% of seniors in Delhi/NCR stated that they don’t require regular medical assistance.
As you can see, senior living homes score high on quality of life, a meaningful retirement, health and medical facilities, and more. As a large number of the working population retire in the next few years, the need of the hour is more high-quality, senior living homes to meet the specific requirements of our aging workforce.
Ashiana Housing build homes. Homes surrounded by vast green spaces and fresh breeze. Homes cocooned in secured gated complexes. Homes where futures are forged and there are opportunities to grow. And Homes in environments brimming with healthy activity, trust and respect. At heart, we build communities with care.