Valentine’s Day, in all its Cupid and candlelight glory, is not just for couples anymore. Indeed, February 14 is now an excellent excuse to shower love on the important people in your life. For seniors especially, who may feel lonely after the excitement of the winter holidays has subsided, Valentine’s Day can be a fun way to have a bit of family (and friend) attention.
Seniors are leading more active, engaged lives than ever before. From the thrill of extreme sports to the rush of new love, more and more seniors see the next chapter as a chance to hone new skills, continue growing, and pursue adventure. Activities for seniors include much more than just sitting on the porch drinking lemonade.
If you are considering moving to a senior living community, you may be wondering what it will be like. As much as tours and community marketing professionals show you the ins and outs of living in a community with other older adults, you may be wondering what it is really like. Will it be fun? Will you make friends? Will you experience new things?
If you are talking about senior living options for yourself or an aging loved one, you may be wondering just how old do you have to be for senior living? After all, the term “old” means many different things to many different people, and the Boomers are showing younger generations that age is, indeed, only a number. You may be surprised to note that senior communities offer a lifestyle suitable for a wide variety of ages, from the mid-fifties and beyond.
The increasing cost of living is always among the top financial concerns that keep seniors up at night, so it can be tempting to evaluate assisted living by cost rather than by the value it offers. But there are unseen costs—emotional, physical, and financial—of choosing the cheapest senior living option instead of the option that meets individual needs both today and tomorrow.
According to theNational Alliance on Mental Illness, more than 6.5 million seniors in 2009 suffered from depression. The statistic may be eight years old but remains startling today because many people still don’t see clinical depression as a problem for aging parents.
If you are weighing your options for choosing to live at a senior community versus staying home, you may find it helpful to consider certain aspects of each. For most seniors, factors such as cost, food, lifestyle, and friendships are crucial to compare before making a decision about your future living arrangements. To better prepare you for this important decision, here are a few things to consider:
What comes to mind when you smell freshly cut grass or chocolate chip cookies cooling on the counter? If you are like many people, these smells can bring up memories even when we aren’t expecting it. Perhaps you remember playing with your children or grandchildren when you smell Play-Doh or think of your wedding day when you smell a certain perfume. While you may have anecdotal stories of how smell conjured a memory for you, there is also scientific research that shows us that smell is a powerful tool when it comes to memory and positive experience.
Elder care costs are a major concern in the United States. According to the National Health Policy Forum, spending for long-term services and supports reached $219.9 billion in 2012,which translates to 9.3 percent of all health care spending in the U.S. These costs will only rise as the American population ages, especially considering the first wave of baby boomers are now older than 70.