When you first start looking at retirement homes and seniors’ residential care facilities, there are two terms that you’ll probably see over and over again:
Independent Living & Residential Care.

If you’re like me, you probably never thought about these before you started looking, so they may seem a little confusing at first.

But basically, these terms are referring to how much assistance the residents are going to receive. Residential care, which is also referred to as assisted living, is a government-registered residence that is required to provide five hospitality services: meals, housekeeping, laundry, social and recreational opportunities, and a 24 hour emergency response system. The seniors who live there will also receive assistance with daily activities, such as bathing, grooming, eating, and medication reminders, among other things. This is the full service treatment for seniors who need help in their daily lives.

Independent living residences do not have the same requirements and usually, the residents do not require as much assistance. They want to be able to do as much as they can by themselves, but may still require a little help here and there.

A lot of independent living residences have a very homey feel, and the people who run the facilities want the people living there to feel like they’re in their own apartment, not a care home. There will be many added luxuries and benefits to staying in such a place. For example, choosing a place with a Chef-run kitchen and an elegant dining room will make living there so much more enjoyable.

So when you’re looking into retirement homes, whether that’s in Calgary, Airdrie, or anywhere else in Alberta, keep these designations in mind. A really good idea is to find a place, like The Hamlets at Cedarwood Station, that offers both, so the transition from one to the other will be easier and won’t require another move later in life.

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