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Aging and Thriving: How to Live Your Best Life – Senior Living Options

Life is a journey, not just solitary moments in time. The adventure doesn’t end with retirement. It can be the best part of the journey.

When considering what’s next, it’s important to consult with a doctor, family members, financial advisors and medical/social service professionals. Working together, families can find the best of many available options to help their loved ones be happy and healthy.

Some seniors may sell their homes and move in with their adult children, providing benefits for both. But it can be taxing if a senior starts to require more care than a child can provide. Help is available through Granite State Independent Living at 228-9680 or www.gsil.org or North Country Home Health & Hospice Agency at 444-5317 or northcountryhomehealth-hospice.org.

Others may downsize, selling their homes to move into a smaller home. I’ll discuss this topic more in an upcoming column, but this is an appealing option for seniors who don’t need daily assistance. Seniors who consider downsizing may also want to consider Independent Living.

Independent Living (IL) is designed for those who don’t require assistance with activities of daily living, but would enjoy convenient services, senior-friendly surroundings and social activities. It’s a popular option for “snowbirds” who don’t want the burden of home ownership. Many communities offer dining services, transportation, activities and social programs.

For those who need help with activities of daily living, such as grooming, getting dressed, or managing medications, Assisted Living (AL) can provide that assistance in a comfortable environment that promotes as much independence as possible. Residents are encouraged to participate in social activities and will be able to get the help they need in a welcoming environment.

Memory Support is available for seniors who suffer from memory loss conditions, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. It offers a wide variety of services tailored to meet an individual’s specific needs. Going beyond what is traditionally offered in AL, activities are designed to help individuals reconnect with favorite hobbies or interests.

For those facing a life-limiting illness or injury, Hospice Care provides expert medical care, pain management and emotional support for end-of-life care. This allows family and friends to celebrate a life lived to the fullest.

Skilled Nursing facilities offer more “skilled” medical expertise and services overseen by physicians. Many of these facilities also provide rehabilitation services, including physical and occupational therapy, to help those who are injured get back on their feet and return to their previous living situation.

Intermediate Care facilities, also called nursing homes, provide 24-hour nursing supervision and custodial care for residents who have serious medical conditions and require long-term care. Like many others, Intermediate Care facilities also provide help with activities of daily living and appropriate social activities.

Not all senior living communities are the same – various facilities offer different services and living options. At The Morrison, we provide skilled nursing care, rehabilitation, assisted living and hospice, while Summit by Morrison will provide independent living, assisted living and apartments for those who may need memory support. There are other senior living communities in the area, which all offer a different mix of living accommodations.

Senior living doesn’t have to be sad or depressing; it can be a stepping stone to carefree living, new friends and new hobbies. Finding the right type of senior living can bring joy, happiness and comfort, knowing a loved one is receiving the care that he or she needs.

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