Aging in place is becoming a very popular concept among elderly seniors. More and more older people are deciding to live in their own homes for as long as they can. A survey conducted by AARP reported that 90 percent of older adults aged 65 and over prefer aging in place instead of moving to senior living facilities. The choice to age in place may not be an option for every senior. Nevertheless, it still can be done successfully even if geriatric care is required. In those cases, with a few minor home modifications or assistance from a home care provider, the benefits of aging in place are worth it. In this article are three important benefits for seniors to age in their own homes.
1. Aging in place gives seniors absolute control of their social life!
It is much easier for aging adults to socialize with family and friends if they live in their own homes. Maintaining a healthy social life is extremely beneficial to an aging person’s health. Connecting with friends and family members on a regular basis without restrictions improves elderly seniors’ physical and mental health. More importantly, studies show that an active social life increases your life expectancy. Elderly people who frequently go out to restaurants, and participate in clubs and social activities are more likely to live longer than those who are somewhat socially isolated living in assisted living facilities.
2. Aging in place keeps elderly seniors healthier and safer!
Living in your own home provides you with a healthier and more controlled environment. Places with large numbers of people living together, in addition to visitors and staff members going in and out on a regular basis, increase an elderly person’s exposure to illness and infections. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and long-term care facilities has been devastating. The pandemic interrupted everyone’s daily life, especially the million Americans living in these facilities. In addition, aging in place is much safer. Prior to Covid-19, the rate of elderly abuse in nursing homes and assisted living facilities reached an all-time high. More than 5 million elderly people are abused in these facilities each year. This number does not include the abuse that goes unreported by health care agencies. Elderly seniors living in their own homes greatly reduce the possibility of being abused.
3. Aging in place saves elderly seniors money
The average cost to live in an assisted living facility is over $3,000 a month. This high cost is due in part because all assisted living facilities and nursing homes are made with a universal design to accommodate people with special needs, in addition to providing professional nursing care to help maintain their residences’ quality of life. These facilities may also provide home healthcare aids to assist with their residences’ activities of daily living and other everyday tasks. However, most elderly seniors are on a fixed income and simply cannot afford to live in these facilities. In cases where money is an issue, aging at home is the only option.
Choosing to age in place is a big decision. Elderly seniors considering it should discuss it with their family members, friends, and healthcare professionals. Even though the benefits listed here are appealing and definitely make the choice worth it, the decision to do so must be taken seriously. A great resource to help you decide is Age In Place, a national aging in place council. This organization will be able to direct you to an area agency on aging near you.