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2 Senior women laughing at an Independent Living facility | Montgomery Place Retirement Community

When you or your loved one start looking into different senior housing alternatives, you’ll realize that there are a lot of them to choose from.

Questions like, “Is a nursing home the best option? What services do senior living communities offer? What’s the difference between independent living and nursing homes?” may arise. Whichever option you choose will depend on your needs or the needs of your senior loved one.

At Montgomery Place in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood, we are ready and happy to welcome seniors looking for a welcoming and fulfilling place to call home. Our purpose is to improve the quality of life for individuals who choose to live here.

This article will explore the key aspects that set apart independent living from nursing homes.

Differences Between Nursing Homes and Independent Living Communities

When looking for a future home, it’s crucial to understand the distinctions between nursing facilities and independent living communities. Below is a list highlighting the key differences:

1. Daily Amenities and Services

In nursing homes, help is available 24/7 for seniors for basic life tasks like bathing, grooming, remembering to take medication, meal preparation, etc.

Medical care or nursing assistance is not part of independent living. Instead, convenience and an active lifestyle are the main focus for independent living communities.

2. Medical and Supportive Care

Nursing homes offer medical support to people who can no longer tend to their basic needs or make good decisions on their own, or function without the help of a loved one.

Independent living communities primarily focus on serving residents’ social needs and lifestyle aspects, as many can live independently without much support.

3. Access to and Contact with Staff

Staff in nursing homes are there to keep an eye on residents and check in on them. They will stay in touch with elders to ensure they are doing well. Staff may intervene if the senior looks to require further assistance.

Seniors in an independent living complex may not have regular contact with the personnel. The resident is the one to determine the level of interaction with the staff in these communities.

4. Family Involvement

Nursing homes provide skilled nursing care and relieve family members of additional caring duties. When the requirements of seniors evolve, the personnel are there to anticipate and satisfy those needs. Visitation schedules may need to be set up at many nursing homes as well.

Families can have peace of mind knowing that their loved ones are not alone or unseen in an independent living community. They can visit as able and don’t have to set up visitation with staff.

5. Continuum of Care

Most seniors who opt for nursing homes deal with health conditions. These types of seniors will eventually need extensive care. For this reason, nursing homes are the most idyllic.

But, many older adults in independent living communities will enjoy long and healthy lives without any extra assistance.

Similarities between Senior Independent Living and Nursing Homes?

Senior living communities and nursing facilities provide support with everyday tasks. This service includes help with personal hygiene duties, including washing, grooming, clothing, etc. Nursing homes and senior living communities have the following in common:

  • Care is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • Transportation services are available.
  • Medical and drug administration.
  • They both assist with mobility.
  • Protocols for security and safety, and much more.
  • Dining options and meal plans are available in both types of communities to guarantee optimal nourishment.
  • Nursing facilities and senior living communities both provide opportunities to mingle and assemble.

Who Can Benefit From Independent Living Communities?

Independent living communities are ideal for:

  • Adults who are searching for a lifestyle that allows them to focus on social activities rather than worrying about house care and repairs.
  • Older adults may become increasingly isolated from society and want to be around people within their age group and enjoy the activities of a community.

Which One Is Right for Me?

You don’t have to be terminally sick to choose to live in a senior living community. The passage of time and the onset of health concerns should not decrease your quality of life.

At Montgomery Place, we can assist you no matter what your ideal retirement looks like or what obstacles you experience in obtaining it. We provide a variety of senior living alternatives with beautiful spacious apartments that overlook Lake Michigan and the Museum of Science and Industry. Contact us today to take advantage of our many attractive senior living options. We’re excited to assist you in writing the next chapter of your life.

Image Source: Paul Vasarhelyi / Shutterstock