11 Telltale Signs It Might Be Time for Assisted Living

It Might be Time for Assisted living if…

1. You Notice a Decline in Physical Health

If your loved one is experiencing any of the following, it might be time to consider assisted living.

  • Frequent falls or accidents.
  • Difficulty with mobility or walking.
  • Chronic health conditions that require ongoing care.
  • Difficulty managing medications or medical treatments

2. You See Evidence of Cognitive Decline

  • Memory loss or confusion
  • Difficulty with decision-making or problem-solving.
  • Getting lost in familiar places

3. You Become Concerned About Safety

Observe your loved one in their normal home environment. If you are a long-distance caregiver, arrange for regular visits from friends, neighbors, or a homemaker/companion.

  • Inability to perform daily tasks, like cooking or bathing, safely
  • Leaving the stove on or forgetting to turn off appliances
  • Wandering and/or getting lost

4. They Lack Reliable Transportation

  • Driving has become dangerous and/or scary
  • Public transportation is not easily accessible or is difficult to use
  • Technology prevents the use of programs like Uber and Lyft

5. They Become Socially Isolated

Did you know that social isolation has negative health consequences equivalent to smoking 15 packs of cigarettes a day?! These are a few signs of social isolation.

  • Withdrawal from social activities or friends
  • Show signs of depression or anxiety
  • Neglect personal hygiene and appearance

6. They Have Difficulty with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)

If your loved one is struggling with basic self-care tasks, their physical and mental health will decline. A little help can make a big difference in their quality of life. Is your loved one experiencing any of the following?

  • Trouble with dressing, grooming, or bathing
  • Incontinence and/or toileting issues
  • Difficulty with eating and maintaining a balanced diet
  • Difficulty getting in and out of a bed or chair (transferring)
  • Difficulty with walking
activities of daily living checklist download

7. The Primary Caregiver is Experiencing Caregiver Burnout

Caregiver burnout is real and should NEVER be ignored. If any of the following applies, it might be time for assisted living:

  • The primary caregiver is overwhelmed and experiencing physical or emotional strain
  • The primary caregiver’s health is deteriorating due to the demands of caregiving
  • The primary caregiver is having difficulty balancing work, other family obligations, personal self-care, and caregiving

8. The Current Home is Unsafe or in Disrepair

Making the right modifications to the home may be too costly and time-consuming. Consider assisted living if:

  • The home is not adapted for the senior’s needs (e.g., no handrails, slippery floors, stairs)
  • Frequent household accidents

Download our free Aging in Place Home Safety Checklist.

Protecting your loved one’s legal and financial interests tops the list. Do they have trouble with any of the following?

  • Difficulty managing finances or paying bills
  • Unopened or uncollected mail
  • Difficulty making everyday decisions
  • Falling victim to scams or financial exploitation.

10. Memory Loss or Behavioral Changes

This one is so important! If you suspect your loved one is experiencing dementia, seek help immediately. Don’t wait for an accident to happen. Signs to look for include:

  • Aggression, agitation, or other behavioral changes
  • Repeatedly asking the same questions
  • Exhibiting signs of confusion
  • Significant weight loss without a clear medical reason.
  • Poor appetite or difficulty cooking and preparing meals.

Disclaimer: The content on this site is meant for general informational purposes and should not be considered professional advice. While we strive for accuracy, we recommend consulting experts for specific guidance. We are not responsible for any decisions made based on this information.

Liz Craven
Liz Craven

Liz Craven, co-publisher of Sage Aging ElderCare Guide alongside her husband Wes, brings a blend of personal experience and heartfelt dedication to her work. Their path in eldercare started with a family story — caring for Wes' grandmother, Mabel, who faced Alzheimer's. This personal chapter not only highlighted the complexities of eldercare but also ignited their passion to support others in similar situations. Later, Liz and Wes filled the caregiver role three more times for their parents. Through the Sage Aging ElderCare Guide, Liz offers a mix of empathetic insight and practical advice, making eldercare more approachable and less daunting for families. Her commitment shines through in every piece of advice, aiming to ease the journey for others as they navigate the world of eldercare.

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