Leading experts in the field – AARP, the CDC, and the National Institute on Aging – have all told us that 90% of people have expressed the desire to age in place. This high percentage may not be a total surprise. As discussed in a previous post, the comforts of the home are important to all of us. But, what does it mean to age in place? And how does it work for our oldest of adults?
In the coming weeks, I will explore the variety of needs and services available in a community. Each week will focus on 1 of 4 topics medical care, the interior and affordability of a home, access to transportation, and the importance of recreational activities and community involvement.
But, before we do it is important to discuss what is aging in place and why people are choosing it!
What is Aging in Place?
In a broad sense, it means the ability to stay in our homes as we age. When we take a deeper look at the needs of older adults, however, this definition must be expanded. For instance, things like access to reliable transportation, the physical layout of our homes, and the ability to easily receive medical care and go to the grocery store must be considered. Access to these types of resources within our community becomes critical to the sustainability to age in place. With this in mind, the meaning of aging in place changes to the ability to stay in both our homes and communities as we age.
And, we aren’t in this alone!
Thankfully, organizations like AARP have already started the process of raising awareness to local and state governments to plan and invest in the infrastructure that would promote an age-friendly community. And as they move the effort forward on a policy level there are still things that we can and should do to ensure our own ability to stay in our homes and communities.
Why Choose to Age in Place?
The Unwanted Mess and Stress of Moving
There are so many things that can change as we age and sometimes these changes can happen all at once. Adding a big move to the mix can be both stressful and unwelcomed.
Save that Hard Earned Cash
Long term care facilities aren’t cheap! The entrance fee alone can be the price of a home. Budgeting for services on a needs base may be a more economically friendly way for consumers!
Savor the Memories
Arguably, we spend a lifetime in our homes. There we can be surrounded by all of the wonderful memories we have collected over the years.
It’s Familiar and Friendly
Not only do we already know the layout of our homes like the back of our hands, but we also probably know many of our neighbors! Who better to call when we are in a grind then our next door neighbors.
Stay tuned next week as we continue the conversation on Aging in Place by focusing on access to in-home care!