If you are an older person living alone, you may experience feelings of loneliness which can have a hugely negative impact your mental health. If you find yourself feeling lonelier as time passes, you may want to consider an independent living property.

As you or your loved one grows older, it is important to preserve independence and remain socially active to combat loneliness.

We are going to cover what independent living is, what the benefits are and what you need to consider before moving to independent living accommodation.

What is independent living

Independent living allows you to move from your home to somewhere that makes life easier, while still allowing you to maintain your independence.

Independent living accommodation such as that available within the Amesbury Abbey Group offers age-restricted communities allowing residents to live as independently as they wish but with added support for general maintenance and welfare.

Most facilities offer activities, excursions and lunchtime services to help create a community with the aim of providing a better place for seniors to live. The basic amenities are looked after such as the garden, laundry and cleaning, allowing residents to focus on enjoying their time at home, socialising and following their interests.

The difference between assisted living and independent living

Independent living allows you to live independently without any direct care. If you require medical or daily assistance to help you during the day while living in one of these communities, it would be your responsibility to hire help.

Although they are similar, the main difference is that if you need direct care, then you will no longer be living independently. Most facilities can include an assisted care package which you can add on to your fees.

The benefits of independent living and why is independent living important to the elderly?

There are many and varied benefits of independent living. These include socialising, maintenance care, and peace of mind.

Feel like an individual

Having the freedom and ability to make choices in your day to day life can have a huge impact on how you feel about yourself. The idea of feeling more independent means you are no longer reliant on your friends and family to help with general life administration, giving you the time to focus on doing the things you enjoy most.

Being able to socialise

It can be difficult to remain social due to your living circumstances and arrangements. Independent living communities create environments that promote regular socialisation and friendships within your community.

The majority of independent living facilities offer dining areas and allow you to enjoy meals with fellow residents. They arrange regular activities and trips including social events, classes, shopping excursions and much more.

Maintenance care

These facilities offer a range of maintenance care, so you won’t have to worry about gardening, washing or cleaning.

Even if you are fit enough to complete these tasks, it does not mean you have to do them. Instead, you will have extra time to socialise, join in on activities or spend time with family and friends.

Improve mental health and wellbeing

Loss of independence can be isolating. Elderly people who are isolated can develop feelings of hopelessness and depression. The negative effects on mental health often lead to lower quality of life.

Independent living facilities surround you with individuals in similar situations. The sense of purpose and understanding of being around others will help improve your mental health and wellbeing.

How to find the best place

Deciding to move to independent living accommodation is a big decision to make. Before committing, you need to understand what your options are. First, you should check that independent living is the right option for you, both now and in the future. Second, you need to decide what is most important to you if you decide to move. You should ask questions such as does the facility allow pets? Is it in a good location close to loved ones? And will it provide for my needs for me into the future if my health deteriorates?

You should consider other essential aspects of your independent living situation. Including accessibility both inside the community and to the other places in the area. It is also worth spending time chatting with the residents at your favoured facility before committing to a long-term decision.

There are many reasons why you would decide independent living is for you or your loved one, however, it is a big decision to make and not one to take lightly. Consider the pros and cons carefully and spend time visiting other facilities to get a feel for what they are like.

For more information please visit amesburyabbey.com

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