7 Benefits of Aging in Place

June 15, 2018 | BY PHS Staff

A couple of years ago, Jane Brody unexpectedly had her fifteen minutes of viral fame with an article in the New York Times. In it, she explored a then-emerging trend, exemplified by an article she cited from AARP Magazine, which had this eye-opening statistic: “[A]lmost 90 percent of Americans 65 or older plan to stay in their homes as they age.” Welcome to aging in place. As the “silver tsunami” of aging boomers changes how — and where — we age, Preferred HealthStaff takes a closer look at the benefits of aging in place.

Aging in Place Defined

First things first; let’s define what we mean by aging in place. As you may have guessed, it means staying in your own home as you age, rather than opting for an assisted living facility, nursing home, or long-term care facility.

Advantages of Aging in Place

If you’re weighing your options as you get older, why should aging in place be at or near the top of your list?

Continuity

Moving house is stressful. There’s downsizing, leaving behind friends and family, and leaving behind a place that’s often accrued decades’ worth of warmth and fond memories. Remain where you are and you’ll always be surrounded by a sense of familiarity and calm.

Connection

Home isn’t just the house we live in. It’s the broader community we belong to, and the connections we’ve built there. It’s the small rituals, whether it’s stepping out for the paper and a coffee with old friends, or greeting the neighbor with the affectionate Goldendoodle on an afternoon walk.

Independence

Just because you might need help from a skilled handyman or a visiting homemaker with the occasional everyday task — the sideboard won’t dust itself, after all — doesn’t mean that you want your every move watched or dictated. We’re social creatures, sure. But we also crave some time to ourselves and the freedom to live our lives our own way!

Memory Care

Aging in place is also a benefit for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Unfamiliar surroundings can lead to sundowning and agitation, while one’s own home has a calming effect and can actually help with memory care and behavior management.

Safety

Even those who are still mentally sharp as a tack find their own homes safer because there’s an instant familiarity with anything and everything one needs. Those who need personal assistance can still find that at home, rather than a separate facility.

Resilience

The psychological benefits of being at home often mean less incidence of depression, a stronger immune system, and quicker recovery from illness. There’s an added advantage to not being in a confined environment with a number of other individuals, which can often be a petri dish of infection.

Cost

Compared to the cost of a nursing home or assisted living community — which is astronomical, and climbing — living in one’s own home with a helping hand is often much more cost-effective.

Help with Aging in Place

There are many considerations that go into choosing to age in place. Some are practical — accessibility to key parts of your home, retrofits to stairs and doorways, and the like — while others may be financial or medical in nature. Preferred Health Staff provides skilled and compassionate Pennsylvania in-home care that makes remaining in your home more feasible. Not only will it give you, your family, and your friends peace of mind to have help close at hand, you also won’t need to worry about the cost of services — we work with a wide range of financial circumstances. We invite you to call 866-943-9791 today to learn more.