Despite huge innovation in the industry, many people still believe some myths about assisted living communities and therefore they may — unfortunately — miss out on the many benefits of assisted living. So, we want to set the record straight and bust some of the most common myths.
What Is Assisted Living?
First, let’s clarify what we’re talking about. Assisted living communities offer comfortable residences for older adults who need help with activities of daily living: bathing, dressing/grooming, eating, walking, toileting, transferring and medication management for seniors. Along with this important support, communities also provide on-site dining, social activities, housekeeping services and regular maintenance that make it a safer living option for people with mobility challenges.
9 Most Common Myths about Assisted Living
- I won’t have any privacy. Some seniors worry that “assistance” means caregivers will be underfoot all the time. In fact, after an initial assessment reveals which activities of daily living a new resident needs help with, the team members, resident and family will work together to decide on a support schedule. Your apartment is your home, and no one will enter it without your prior knowledge.
- My life will become all about care. The support residents receive in assisted living is designed to keep them as independent as possible. With a helping hand, seniors can pursue their interests and take on new challenges with more confidence. Within a community, new opportunities will open up. Days can be filled to your taste with activities, committee meetings, outings, classes or outside interests. But you’ll also know health care team members are always on-hand at the community if you need help.
- I will have to live on the community’s schedule. No way! You may agree on a care schedule with your team members, but outside of those appointments, your time is your own. Any community activities or clubs are optional. The chef and dining team provide three delicious meals a day with flexible dining times and carry-out options, but if you decide to skip a meal, all apartments in assisted living at Sagewood offer kitchenettes.
- The food at assisted living facilities will be bland. You don’t have to eat at the community for every meal, but you may want to. At Sagewood, three different restaurant-style dining venues add variety and an expert chef creates scrumptious menus for each venue with senior nutrition in mind.
- I’ll be separated from my spouse. One common question we hear when people are considering a move is “Can a couple live together in assisted living?” If you would benefit from the regular support of assisted living but your spouse doesn’t need it, you can still live together in an assisted living apartment. Desert Willow, Sagewood’s assisted living neighborhood, offers both one- and two-bedroom apartments, depending on how much space you’d like. Team members want residents to live as happily and healthfully as possible.
- My family can care for me just as well. For some seniors, this may be true, but for many, caregiving may require skills that family members don’t have or tasks they’re not comfortable with, like medication management or bathing. With an expert care team on campus, trained support is there when you need it, and your loved ones can remain loved ones — not caregivers.
- It’s cheaper to age at home. If you’ve paid off your mortgage, it may feel like your regular expenses are low. But living in a community provides access to services and amenities that will cut down on other costs: things like gym memberships, groceries, utilities, housekeeping, maintenance, etc. Additionally, if you need regular, expert care in Arizona, it is likely to be more cost- effective to receive that care within an assisted living community. The 2019 Genworth Cost of Care survey reports that the average monthly cost for a home health aide in the Grand Canyon State is $4,767 and the average monthly cost for homemaker services is an additional $4,767. On the other hand, the average cost per month in an assisted living community is $3,750. Over time, assisted living can offer you substantial savings.
- I’ll be lonely in assisted living. On the contrary, with a campus full of new neighbors and more social opportunities than you’ll know what to do with, your calendar may be fuller than ever. Many residents develop strong bonds with team members and discover they’re more emotionally supported within a community than when they lived in a house.
- If I didn’t live at Sagewood in independent living, I can’t get into assisted living. Nope. We welcome both residents transitioning from independent living as well as new residents into our assisted living neighborhood.