May 9, 2022 11:00:00 AM | 6 Min Read

What Exactly Is Senior Living?

Posted By Vista Springs
What Exactly Is Senior Living?

Millions of older adults are living in senior living communities. While these communities have similarities, not all senior living facilities have the same offerings. It all depends on what you or your loved one needs for a happy, healthy life.

This article will discuss more information about the different types of senior living communities out there.

Independent Living

There comes an age where it becomes difficult to live an independent lifestyle. At this point, you may choose to live in an assisted or independent living community. However, choosing which option is best can be challenging.

Independent living is for those who can still live on their own but need assisted services occasionally. These services could involve cooking meals, doing laundry, or cleaning the house. The type of assistance can change from person to person. In an independent living community, residents have access to medical care, dining options, entertainment, and more. Independent living is like living on your own with assistance available as needed. Some residents only need help once or twice a week! Independent living could be the answer if you’re wondering about the next step for your loved one.

Catered Living

Catered living is a step up from independent living, as many residents need additional assistance. However, they still live independent lifestyles. Catered living specialists can help with several everyday tasks, such as cooking, laundry, bathing, medical care, etc. Those residing in catered living communities can participate in their favorite hobbies without worrying about housekeeping and other chores. However, the needs of a resident change from person to person. The facility will adjust its offerings to cater to those needs.

Assisted Living

Assisted living communities are designed for those looking for help in their everyday life. They may require assistance with bathing, eating, moving around, and more. Those living in assisted living communities can still live independent lifestyles but may need daily help. However, the specific needs are based on the resident. While one person may need help with cooking, another may require assistance using the restroom.

Typically, many services are included with the monthly rent in an assisted living facility, including housekeeping duties, maintenance needs, laundry services, dining, and transportation. In addition to receiving everyday help from staff, residents also enjoy several different events and activities. These communities also usually have additional services and offerings if the resident needs them.

Skilled Nursing

Skilled nursing involves medical care from trained, professional nurses. You’ll typically find skilled nursing services in hospitals or assisted living communities. These offerings are provided by licensed, experienced nurses. While some residents need skilled nursing services daily, others only need them occasionally.

Nurses provide their services as needed. As residents may deal with frequent medical concerns, having nurses on staff can be very helpful and saves a trip to the hospital or another medical care facility. It’s also common to see skilled nursing services ordered by a doctor. Many residents enjoy in-house skilled nursing because they don’t have to travel far to get their care.

Memory Care

As we age, our memory can suffer. While this is common with many people, there are some ways to help the cause. One helpful service is called memory care. Memory care can be offered in assisted living communities, and it involves a wide variety of services. Those working in memory care are specifically trained in caring for those experiencing mental decline and memory loss, and services are based on a resident’s needs.

Also, these professionals understand the common problems and situations encountered by these residents, such as wandering or becoming overly emotional. Memory care facilities usually have alarms on door entrances, codes on elevators, and other safety features to keep residents out of harm's way. If you or a loved one is diagnosed with a neurodegenerative disease like dementia, memory care services can provide peace of mind.


When residents get older, they may need more assistance and additional medical care. Often, they need to move into another facility to cater to their increased needs. However, this can be a stressful, confusing process for residents, especially if they have a cognitive disability. An age-in-place program can help!

Age-in-place refers to an assisted living service that provides care as a person ages. Medical care, medication administration, cooking, and help with everyday tasks are included in age-in-place options. This service allows residents to stay in the community they love, helping them maintain friendships and sustain a healthy lifestyle. While moving your belongings and relocating to a different facility can be stressful, age-in-place provides peace of mind for residents and their families.

After learning about the different types of senior living, you can now make an educated decision on the best care for you or your loved one!

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Topics: Care Services, All About Assisted Living

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