Seven Things To Look For In an Assisted Living Community: A Guide For Adult Children and Caregivers

Mother and adult daughter

Seven Things To Look For In an Assisted Living Community: A Guide For Adult Children and Caregivers

When you’ve come to the place where you need help caring for an aging loved one, it’s often difficult to decide what the solution for their long-term needs should be. To make the right choice, it’s helpful to understand the most common criteria for evaluating your care options. Here are seven things to look for in an Assisted Living community:

1. The model of care

One of the first things to consider when you look for an Assisted Living community, is the facility’s fundamental approach to care. Does the staff adhere to rigid schedules for meals and activities? Does the setting seem institutional or clinical? How do the staff handle personal preferences? Is there special care for every level of need?

At Park Springs, our unique Household Model of Care offers a cheery, homelike environment guided by the personal preferences of our Members. With private bedrooms, open kitchens, plenty of natural light, access to the outdoors, and comfortable shared living spaces, your loved one can do what they want, when they want including meals on their own timetable. A complete continuum of care is available for different levels of need including River household for those with mild cognitive decline as well as Cobblestone and Pebblebrook for specialized Memory Care.

2. The care team

The key to any care option is the team who provides it. Visit the facility to observe staff on the job. Are they friendly, patient, and compassionate? How many people does each employee have under their care? It’s also important to verify their experience, training, and accreditation.
Park Springs’ low staff-to-Member ratio ensures that your mom or dad receives attentive care 24/7. In every household, each Member receives the support of a Care Partner, a Nurse, a Homemaker (personal chef), a Nurse, and a Guide. Each one of these caregivers is extensively trained to handle all of your mom or dad’s daily needs including bathing and grooming, medical needs, medication management, and planned activities.

3. The culture

A big part of choosing the right place for your mom or dad depends on how the community will support and engage them. As you observe staff interactions, do they appear genuinely interested or detached? Do providers seem invested in the health and well-being of those under their care?

The revolutionary Spirit Culture of Care at Park Springs is focused on the dignity of each person in our care. You’ll see caregivers making eye contact and emotional connections so they can understand your loved one’s feelings and needs. We take the time to a build a relationship with your loved one and get to know their personal story. The result is a close-knit community that feels like family and inspires your mom or dad’s spirit to thrive.

4. Activities and amenities

Another important thing to look for is the level of activities and amenities that are offered. Are there options suited to your loved one’s hobbies and personality? Are there programs that promote physical, mental, and spiritual health?

At Park Springs, you’ll discover a wide variety of daily activities and amenities including art classes, lectures, games, fitness classes, and worship opportunities. We also have a unique brain fitness program, Brain HQ, that has been proven to help Members think faster, focus better, and remember more.

5. The environment

There is much to be gained by carefully observing the overall look and feel of the place. Does it feel drab and lifeless? Is there artwork on display? Do you see medication carts, staff in uniforms, and people eating alone?

One of the first things you’ll notice at Park Springs is our bright and colorful spaces specially designed for the visual challenges that accompany cognitive decline. Elevated artwork adorns the walls and a hopeful, energetic vibe fills the air. You may see Care Partners dressed in PJ’s at night to put Members at ease, or Members laughing and chatting as they enjoy a meal together.

6. Medical support

Medical support staff is also a major concern. Are there skilled nurses and highly-trained physicians on staff? Are they specialized in senior care? Do they offer preventative care?

Park Springs is one of a few Life Plan Communities where you’ll find a Wellness Clinic on site. Members receive comprehensive care from a Nurse Practitioner and two specially-trained Geriatricians including Neurologist, Dr. Joash Lazarus, who is a Movement Disorder specialist. The Wellness Clinic is open five days a week so your loved one can get the care they need without ever having to leave the campus.

7. The dining experience

Last but not least is the food! Are the menu options varied or repetitive? Is the food fresh and tasty, or does everything taste bland and boring like it came from a can? Is there a special diet designed for various illnesses and conditions?

At Park Springs, we know that delicious, healthy food and an enjoyable dining experience are essential elements for your loved one’s physical health and social stability. For optimum brain and heart health, our menu features mouth-watering meals based on the Mediterranean diet. Be sure to include a meal in your tour so you can judge the food for yourself.

With thorough research, you don’t have to feel guilty about seeking additional care for your mom or dad. Help them start a new chapter at Park Springs. Find out more with an overstay stay or through our 30-day Respite Care program.

There are many options out there for the best care for your aging loved one and it’s important to research those options. At Park Springs, we are here to help you. Contact us for more information.