How To Decide on the Best Senior Living Situations

shschicagometro 28 Mar 2022

Give Your Loved One Quality Care

As we go through life, we may find ourselves moving from our parent’s home to a college dorm, to our first apartment, then our first home. And finally, it comes the time when we migrate to a senior living situation such as an assisted living facility, nursing home, or independent living with assisted care.

When that time does come, our families may have a hard time figuring out which personal assisted home care is right for us. We want to make that decision a bit easier, so we have laid out the similarities and differences in senior living between assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and independent living with assisted care.

Assisted Living Facilities

Assisted living facilities are mainly for seniors who need help with daily living. Seniors who would thrive in an assisted home environment are mobile and can get around by themselves independently or either with a walker or wheelchair.

Assisted facilities can vary in the forms of services they provide, but they often offer a core list of services that most residents need, according to WebMD. These core services include:


Caregivers in assisted homes can help with meal preparation, grocery shopping, and cooking meals for the residents.

Medication Monitoring

Some homes offer an Electronic Medication Administration Record (e-MAR) system which allows caregivers to record when a patient took their medicine, how it was administered, the proper dosage, and how often they need to take it.

Personal Care (bathing, hygiene, etc.)

Although residents in assisted homes are independent, they may need assistance with daily activities. This can simply be helping to get dressed, brushing teeth, opening bottles such as shampoo and conditioner, helping to take a shower, or helping to go to the bathroom.

Help with daily activities (housekeeping, laundry)

We often forget how hard it is to take care of a house and residents in assisted care are helped with these daily cleaning tasks. Caregivers can help vacuum, make a bed, tidy up the house, put away groceries, help do laundry, etc.

Usually, a nurse is on call 24/7 in case of emergency

Most times residents in assisted care need only a fair amount of medical assistance. But they do recognize emergencies can come up, so that is why they typically have a nurse on call 24/7 just in case.

Minimal to Moderate medical care

Caregivers in assisted homes can help with some medical care, but not all. Most of the time do not have the same qualifications as registered nurses, therefore medical care is beneficial for seniors who do not need around-the-clock care.


In assisted homes, residents get a healthy amount of socialization with their fellow residents and caregivers. The homes usually will do game nights, movie nights, or outside activities  together. Family and friends can also visit and play games and chat with their loved ones. Also, some homes offer pet therapy and partner with local organizations and schools to get the residents to socialize with others.

Living Arrangements

Assisted homes can offer different living situations. They typically are in an actual home, so residents have an easier time adjusting to the new environment. Assisted homes also offer a different level of privacy than nursing homes can. Residents can get a private room and bathroom, or if they are going into care with their partner or friend, they can share a room.

Nursing Homes

Nursing homes are more monitored than assisted living facilities. They offer the same services, but at a more extensive length.

Nursing homes are typically for residents who need medical care 24/7. They typically will need help throughout the day doing various tasks and may even need occupational, physical, and speech therapies.

Residents here cannot live independently at all and are dependent on help with most things. They also are around more people and will have organized group activities and games with other residents.

Living Arrangements

Nursing homes are arguably a bit harder to get used to for residents. This can be due to the dorm-like rooming and hospital feel.

Independent Living

Seniors Helping Seniors® in-home services is a leading provider of Senior In-Home Care services in Chicago. We make life a little easier for you or a loved one by providing services in the home that include: companionship, light housekeeping, cooking, gardening, transportation assistance, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, assistance with daily errands, activities, and more. Our senior home care services allow elderly adults the opportunity to continue living an independent life in their own homes without the need to move.

Living Arrangements

In the family home surrounded by their things and familiar items. They are close to their family and friends providing comfort and reassurance as they age.


There are a lot of similarities and differences in senior living situations. Their major differentiator is the amount of care that can be provided. If your loved one just needs simple help with tasks around the house or in their daily lives an assisted home is the way to go. However, if your loved one is in a progressive stage of health, has a cognitive disease, or just can’t do most things alone, a nursing home is the best choice as they can be monitored 24/7 and get help with all activities.

About the Author

Melissa Andrews is the Content Marketing Strategist for Paradise Living Centers, an assisted living center for seniors with locations in Paradise Valley and Phoenix, Arizona. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking and going on hiking trips with her siblings and cousins.

To start services call or text Seniors Helping Seniors® Chicago Metro at 312-526-3666 or visit our website at to learn more about us.

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