Deciding that you wish to move yourself or a loved one into a retirement home is frequently the first step of many on a road to settling into a comfortable life in a retirement home. Toronto has a wide variety of retirement communities that each fulfills a niche in a senior spectrum of care: active adult living, independent living, assisted living, continuing care, and home care. Choosing a category that best fits your needs is important to ensure proper care and satisfaction for all parties involved.
Each category focuses on filling a certain niche in the senior care spectrum. Here are your options when choosing a retirement home in the Toronto metropolitan area.
1. Active Adult Living
This option caters to active adult couples or singles, usually in the 50+ range. Active adult communities offer a worry-free and maintenance-free environments for retired adults. These communities offer a variety of services and amenities: fine-dining, fitness centers, golf courses, swimming pools, furnished suites, and many others. The communities are frequently gated to provide an additional level of security and peace of mind. The greatest advantage of these communities is that they provide a social, friendly atmosphere for its residents. These communities help seniors stay healthy by creating an active and social environment for them. This is an excellent choice for those looking to live an active, hassle-free lifestyle.
2. Independent Living
An option for independent, active, self-sufficient senior who need minor help with their day to day activities such as laundry, transportation, meals, etc. This is a great option for mostly active and autonomous individuals who want minor help with their daily tasks. These communities most frequently offer condos, apartments, or suites as living options but others are available as well.
3. Assisted Living
This is an ideal option if a person has some physical or cognitive limitations. These communities have on-site staff that provide help with personal care, mobility, and medications. Assisted living is a good option for a person that needs assistance with more than one of the following tasks, housekeeping, meals preparation, getting around the house, getting around the town, hygiene, dressing, toileting, and/or eating.
4. Home Care
Home care is an attractive option for those individuals that need some assistance with their day to day living but do no wish to move from their current place of residency or into a retirement community. Home care provides assistance with health, nutrition, transportation, companionship, and home maintenance. Home care is a growing field due to the fact that many seniors are reluctant to move out of their current community unless absolutely necessary. However, they are downside to home care vs community living: loneliness, daily tasks taking up too much time, home maintenance deteriorating, chronic health issue that are not being addressed daily, and the care giver starting to fill overburdened.
5. Other Options
If the first step is to figure out what level of care you or your loved one might need, the second step is to locate accredited homes that fulfill your identified needs. The Ontario Retirement Community Association (ORCA) is a non-profit group that accredits retirement homes and will have listing in your area. It’s also a good idea to keep in mind that some retirement homes offer short-term stays or mealtime visits for potential residents. Besides ORCA, there is also the Alzheimer Society Canada and the Advocacy Centre for the Elderly. Concerned Friends of Ontario Citizens in Care Facilities provides an 81 checkpoint list of things to ask and observe when touring a retirement home facility.
Choosing a retirement home is a big step, there are some that equate the decision to buying a new home, but if one utilizes all of the available tools the process will not be painful or extraordinarily lengthy. Choosing a retirement home that is a perfect fit for you or your loved one is a great way to ensure years of future happiness and satisfaction.