The Evolution of Senior Living

Senior living has evolved since it started in the 1980s. Before then, the elderly didn’t have many options as to how/where they age. They could either age in a nursing facility with round-the-clock medical care with no independence or age in their homes with relatives and caregivers taking care of them, which was a form of assisted living. Due to the increase in elder abuse in nursing homes and the lack of autonomy in these hospices, many older people preferred to age in place. “Aging in Place” is where elderly people age in the same home/place they have been for most of their lives. Apart from retaining their independence or semi-independence, it also brings a sense of comfort, familiarity, and stability. However, senior living has evolved since the 1980s.

  1. Dr. Karen Wilson founded it.

Modern Senior Living Facilities, as you know it, was founded in the 1980s by Dr. Karen Wilson, who has a Ph.D. in Gerontology. In 1988, it became the first licensed Senior Living Facility. She founded it to help seniors like her mother – who had a stroke at the time – live fulfilling lives without being subjected to nursing facilities. 

  1. Age in place

As people age, there is a need for stability. Senior living has evolved to meet the demand for aging in place so that older people feel comfortable and safe in a stable environment. With the building of these facilities, you can age in place and at the same time get the hospice care that is needed for you to remain healthy as you age.

  1. Peer relationships

Good friends help make you feel better when you are down and make you feel less lonely as you age. Senior living facilities also made peer relationships easier. It makes it possible for you to communicate with others and understand others better because of the closeness in age range and life experiences. Senior living facilities have evolved to include recreational activities, communal gatherings, and events where older people who are either independent or have assisted living can come together and enjoy the company of one another.

  1. Independence

Dependence is something you may try to avoid. You try as much as you can to be independent, as it gives you control over how you behave. Here, you can decide when to go to bed, when to eat, amongst other things. Before building senior living facilities, nursing homes provided hospice care for the elderly who were dependent and were told what to do. This method led to elder abuse. 

  1. Lesser responsibilities

As you age, you would no longer wish to be burdened with rent, bills, etc. Senior living facilities made sure that as seniors, you could move into facilities and not worry about the frequent taxes, light bills, water bills, rent, etc., as those are taken care of by the facilities after paying for your living. Senior facilities in modern times have evolved to have living options of either renting apartments, single rooms, or even a shared room. 

  1. Privacy

Who doesn’t like their privacy? Unlike nursing homes, senior living facilities made sure that with independence came privacy. Residents can lock the doors to their rooms and can decide who visits or not.

Senior Living facilities have evolved since they were first built, and there has been a considerable increase in demand for senior living facilities that make sure that you get the best care possible.

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