Are you a CNA or Caregiver Looking for a Job? Click Here.
Comparing Live-In Care with Facility Living as Options for Aging Seniors | Generations Home Care

There comes a point in most people’s lives when they can no longer live independently without help. When that time comes, you and your older loved one must decide how to continue their care. Depending on their needs and preferences, either a live-in caregiver or assisted living facility will likely be the best option. But how do you decide which of these two choices is best for your loved one? 

When your loved one doesn’t require intensive medical care but needs help with daily tasks such as cooking, housekeeping, bathing and grooming, live-in care or facility living are a great way to maintain their quality of life. Both live-in care and facility living have respective benefits. Choosing between them involves careful consideration of your loved one’s needs, preferences, and budget. 

What is Facility Living?

Facility living can involve several different options for your loved one in need of advanced care. In short, it means that your loved one will leave home and stay at a location where your loved one will live and receive in-depth care. 

Facility living can encompass all of the following:

  • Assisted living facilities.
  • Adult group homes.
  • Nursing homes.

Let’s explore the difference between each of these options.

Assisted Living Facilities

An assisted living facility provides housing and care for a large number of seniors, often offering activities and entertainment in addition to meals and other basics. Assisted living facilities can host between 25 and 120 seniors. They can assist with housekeeping services and medication management, prepare meals, and help with grooming and bathing. However, they cannot provide skilled nursing assistance to patients with acute medical needs.

Adult Group Home

Compared to an assisted living facility, an adult group home provides a smaller-scale living experience that feels more like home. Usually, an adult group home will only support a maximum of six residents, allowing each person to receive personal care. They may be located in what was once a single-family dwelling in a residential area.

Nursing Homes

Nursing homes offer the highest-acuity care for seniors with complicated medical needs compared to other facilities. These facilities often provide skilled nursing, 24-7 supervision, and help with all types of daily activities. Nursing homes are a good fit for people who need constant high-level care. An assisted living facility or adult group home usually cannot provide regular nursing services, so people with complex medical needs may need to stay in a nursing home. 

What is Live-In Care?

Compared to facility living, where your loved one goes to a new location to receive care, live-in care brings the help to you. A caregiver will come and live in your home to help you with your daily needs, providing all the benefits of facility living in the comfort of your own home. An in-home caregiver can help with all your non-medical needs, including housekeeping, cooking, and help with bathing and toileting. Live-in care can be a good option for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients who need regular, consistent care but benefit from familiar settings. It’s also a great way for people with mobility issues or other general difficulties in tending to daily tasks to maintain their independence and quality of life.

Is Live-In Care More Affordable Than Facility Living?

When finding the best care for your older loved one, finding a solution that fits your budget is essential. But as you compare the costs of live-in care vs. facility living, there’s no simple bottom line. The cost of either service will likely depend on the level of care your loved one needs rather than where they’re receiving it. 

This means that the choice between live-in care vs. facility living will usually come down to a question of what type of care your loved one needs and their feelings about staying at home. But when you consider that the majority of seniors prefer to age in place, live-in care becomes an appealing option for maintaining their quality of life.

Benefits of Live-In Care

The choice between live-in care and a residential facility can be complicated. However, seniors can reap many benefits when they stay at home and receive live-in care. 

Higher Quality-of-Life

As we get older, we often find it harder to take care of the basic necessities of everyday life. However, an in-home caregiver can bridge the gap to ensure their clients continue to have the absolute best quality of life. They can assist with the following tasks to keep your loved one happy and comfortable: 

  • Cooking.
  • Housekeeping.
  • Bathing and grooming.
  • Toileting.
  • Laundry.

Comfortable, Familiar Settings

Aging in place offers a number of mental and physical benefits. Most people prefer to remain in their chosen home, surrounded by their possessions and furnishings, rather than the anonymized features of a facility. 

Visits Any Time

One drawback of facility living is that they may restrict the hours you can visit your loved one to specific days and times. Sadly, many people discovered during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic that these restrictions could sharply limit their ability to see their older loved ones. With live-in care, you’ll never face limitations as to when you can see your family member. This means you’ll have total transparency about the care they’re receiving rather than visits scheduled on the facility’s schedule. 

Personalized Care

One of the greatest concerns people have about facility living is whether they will receive adequate, personalized care. In the worst-case scenario of institutionalized care, clients can feel lost and forgotten in the gears of a larger system. This can mean they don’t get the level of care and attention they deserve, and their mental and physical health suffers as a result. 

With live-in care, family members, service providers, and the patient themselves come together to create a care protocol tailored to their individual needs. Whatever your loved one needs the most help with, an in-home caregiver can ensure they address it. 

Help with Pets

Unfortunately, many seniors may have to give up their pets when moving into facility living. But with in-home care, seniors can continue to live with their beloved companions and even get additional help with their care. 

Companionship

It’s a sad fact that many seniors suffer from isolation and loneliness as they age. Though a residential facility can provide opportunities for social connection, in many ways it can also further that sense of isolation. 

Live-In Care vs. Facility Living: What’s the Best Choice?

Live-in care may not supply some of the perks of facility care, like pools and exercise equipment. But it does provide a comfortable, familiar environment that allows your loved one to continue living life independently, on their own terms. Rather than prescribing a default regimen of activities, an in-home caregiver can keep your loved one connected with friends, family, and hobbies that give their life meaning. That personal, customized touch is what truly makes in-home care one of the best options for aging care.

About Generations Home Care

Generations Home Care personalized in-home care and support services help those recovering from illness, injury, or surgery, living with a chronic disease, or dealing with the natural process of aging. We help people live a fuller, healthier, and independent life.

Our caregivers are trained in the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommended COVID-19 safety precautions. We offer levels of care ranging from companionship, to respite for the primary family caregiver, to homemaking services, to assistance with activities of daily living, to Alzheimer’s and dementia care. Generations Home Care takes a holistic approach and emphasizes a consistent, client-centered plan of care.

Our Specialty Services Include:

  • Rehab or hospital-to-home programs for safe discharge.
  • Short-term post-operative care during recovery periods.
  • Non-medical life management services for people with chronic conditions.
  • Veteran’s connection to care program.
  • Live-in services and couples care.

If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you, contact us today at 602-595-HOME (4663) or by filling out the contact form on our website.


About the author - Generations Home Care

Helpful Tips for Having “The Talk” with Your Older Relatives Hospital Rehab to Home: How In-Caregivers Ease the Transition