What Does Assisted Living Provide?
You’ll often see a few levels of care offered at assisted living residences, and those with more care needs typically charge a higher monthly rate. Although services and amenities are different and based on each facility, below is a list of the most common services:
- Assistance with personal care (bathing, dressing, eating)
- Three cooked meals a day
- Help with medication administration
- Health monitoring and management (not skilled nursing)
- 24-hour security
- 24-hour supervision
- Recreational activities
- Senior transportation
- Social service help
- Religious activities
- Educational activities
Does Assisted Living Help with Toileting?
While assisted living communities do not provide medical care — as do nursing homes — they will certainly help residents who need assistance using the bathroom. This includes both bathing and toileting.
Does Assisted Living Include Meals?
While some facilities charge extra for different types of meal services, most communities will include three cooked meals per day as part of your base price.
Pro Tip: Remember to always ask communities you’re interested in for their specific list of available services. These will also help make it easier to compare communities side by side when it comes time to make a decision.
In the United States, there are approximately 30,000 assisted living communities with nearly one million licensed beds. While the average number of licensed beds per assisted living community is 33, many communities include more than 100 beds.
In any given assisted living community, you may find private studio, one-bedroom, and dorm-style apartments. Most often, these single-unit spaces include private restrooms and a small area for cooking or food storage. You can even find locations that include full-sized kitchens. Sometimes these home-like residences come fully furnished. Others are unfurnished, allowing you to make your space your own.
Can a Spouse Live in Assisted Living?
Since most assisted living communities have a variety of room sizes, couples are generally welcome to move in together. In my experience, when spouses transition together to this type of community, they find the experience much more comfortable and enjoyable.
Are Pets Allowed in Assisted Living Facilities?
Most assisted living communities allow residents to have pets. Just like any apartment building, however, there are likely rules regarding pet ownership. Exotic animals such as reptiles and birds might not be allowed, and dogs of a certain breed or size might be restricted. Be sure to ask the facility about their specific rules regarding pets, and also check if they charge additional pet rent.
Can You Drink Alcohol in Assisted Living?
Unlike pets, which are allowed almost universally, the rules regarding alcohol in assisted living vary widely. Some communities offer alcohol with meals, whereas others only allow residents to consume it with written approval from a doctor. If alcohol consumption is a regular part of your life, be sure to ask a representative from a prospective community about their drinking policies.