activities of daily livingActivities of daily living are the things people do every day, like eating, bathing or dressing.

That’s the short answer. The long one includes answers to questions like why activities of daily living (ADLs) matter and how they can help you tell what level of care your parent needs.

Here’s what you need to know about activities of daily living, without the confusing medical jargon.

tips for moving parents into assisted livingDear Stephanie:

We visited my mom in Columbus, Ohio over the weekend. Truth be told, I’m worried about her and have been for a while. At a minimum, she is lonely. She might even be depressed. Some of the other concerns I have are small, but I think they add up to a more serious decline in her health.

assisted living signsYou’ve noticed some changes in your parent. Maybe Mom isn’t dressing like she used to, or perhaps Dad no longer plays bridge even though he used to love it. But are these signs that it’s time for assisted living?

It can be difficult to tell whether your parent could benefit from assisted living or not. Here are four signs that it might be time to consider making the move.

macintosh assisted livingThe phrase “continuum of care” can mean something different depending on what field it’s referring to. When it comes to senior and assisted living, “continuum of care” refers to a comprehensive offering of services that can cover a variety of care needs seniors have.

MacIntosh assisted living communities are able to offer a continuum of care through rehab and skilled nursing services. Here’s why that matters when you’re choosing an assisted living community for your parent or loved one.

 downsizing for assisted livingWhen you’re preparing to make the move to an assisted living community, it can be a little intimidating to contemplate the downsizing process (also known as rightsizing). Many of us have lived in our homes for decades, which makes it difficult to imagine what our life will look like somewhere else.

senior physical therapy rehabYou’ve been through the hospitalization process and the transition to rehab with your loved one. You’ve helped your parent navigate their recovery journey, and now they’re back on their feet and ready to return home.

So now what?

women with medicationDear Sarah,

Our entire family knows my mother needs to move to assisted living. She forgets to take her medications, and she gets vertigo very easily. When I’ve asked her about bruises, she has no idea where she gets them. And even though she gets Meals on Wheels, I don’t think she’s eating right.

mac assisted living coupleDear Sarah,

My mom and dad have been together for more than 40 years. Last year, Mom had a stroke, and now, she has difficulty walking, bathing, dressing and even eating.

Dad’s done a terrific job of taking care of her, but we can tell it’s becoming more and more difficult for him. He’s already told me he’s concerned he’ll fall while he’s trying to help her.

We’ve tried everything to help them stay in their homes. Right now, we have home health care aides coming in four hours a day (their minimum), and Mom doesn’t need that much. We’ve also contracted for someone to mow the lawn, shovel the snow, and do odd jobs. The costs are mounting, and I’m not sure Mom and Dad are any safer or happier.

They’ve never been separated, and we’re concerned about the effect on Dad if Mom went to a nursing home.

Can you help us?

Sincerely,

Joseph

man relaxing on a benchDear Sarah,

My father has always been an outdoorsman—hunting, fishing, gardening. However, since our mother passed on, he’s become more and more frail. Recently, when my sister stopped to drop off some food, she found him trying to hoe the garden. When she asked why he was limping, he told her he’d fallen earlier that day.

This isn’t the first time he’s fallen and hurt himself. We’ve decided Dad needs a safer place to stay, but we don’t want him stuck inside a nursing home away from nature. Are there other options?

Sincerely,

Theresa
Hilliard, Ohio