Health & Fitness

Continuing Care Communities vs Assisted Living: 3 Key Differences

The senior citizen population in the U.S. has been increasing rapidly in recent years. In 2018, there were 52 million Americans over the age of 65. By 2060, that number is expected to have doubled.

Caring for an aging family member or navigating your own senior years has its fair share of challenges. One is deciding where to live as you reach your golden years.

Continuing care communities and assisted living facilities are two options for senior citizens. Keep reading to learn 3 key differences between the two, and who they may be best suited for.

1. Continuing Care Communities Allow Residents to “Age in Place”

Assisted living is a great solution for older individuals who do not need advanced medical care or help with daily living activities. However, as an individual ages, it’s likely that his or her needs will increase.

As their medical needs increase or they struggle to perform daily tasks on their own, it’s likely that they’ll need to move.

Moving is tough at any age. But if you’re struggling with your health or have memory problems, it can be particularly tough. The fewer moves a person has to make at an advanced age, the better.

That’s where continuing care communities come in.

These facilities offer care at every age. A resident can start out with minimal help in an assisted living-style residence. As their needs increase, so will the care that they receive, without them having to leave their home.

2. CCRCs Feature More Recreation Options

Recreation options in independent living facilities vary widely from one to the next.

While some may offer organized activities or feature recreation options like swimming pools, others are strictly retirement communities.

The same cannot be said for continuing care retirement communities. By comparison, most CCRCs feature common dining areas with cooked meals, activity centers with organized activities, gyms, pools, and more.

This gives individuals more options for staying active and entertained without having to stray far from home.

Staying active is important at any age, but it is especially important for senior citizens. Keeping active and healthy will reduce the impact of chronic conditions and illnesses and enhance their mobility. It also benefits their mental health and can help them sleep, boost their mood, and improve brain function.

3. Assisted Living is Designed for Those Who Need Less Help

While certain chronic conditions and illnesses don’t get in the way of senior citizens taking care of themselves or performing everyday tasks, they may still require around-the-clock medical care.

An individual may be capable of living in an assisted living community. However, that community may not offer the level of medical care that they need.

A CCRC offers allow an individual to live independently while still receiving the medical care that they need.

Choosing between Continuing Care Communities and Assisted Living

Choosing between continuing care communities and assisted living for your loved one is a big decision. Understanding the differences between the two and who they are best suited for will allow you to make an informed decision.

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