Nov 28, 2022

Signs my parents or grandparents may need senior care

Manny Cominsky

While many people understand the benefits of senior living or at home senior care, the conversation about moving into senior living or getting some additional senior care around the home can be a difficult one for families. After decades of living in their own home and caring entirely for themselves, it is understandable that some seniors are concerned they may lose some of their independence or autonomy by moving into a senior living community. Relatedly, some seniors are slow to realize they truly need some form of assistance given they’ve been able to care for themselves for so long. But as we age, our ability to successfully complete the Activities of Daily Living can become increasingly more difficult. Living independently can add to the stress and complication of this transition. Homes require maintenance, upkeep, and repairs that become far too demanding over time. 

Because some seniors may take time to realize all the benefits that come with senior living and at home senior care (or never realize them at all), it’s important for family members to be aware of the signs that a loved one may be ready for senior care. Here are some signs that your parent or grandparent may be ready to start thinking about finding senior living or senior care.

Activities of Daily Living

As we’ve covered on the blog before, one of the most important ways to tell whether a loved one is ready for a senior living community or senior care is whether they struggle with completing the Activities of Daily Living. The Activities of Daily Living are a set of daily behaviors that medical and senior care professionals use to assess whether an individual is able to adequately care for themself.

The Activities of Daily Living are used to assess whether an individual is able to adequately care for themself, and includes daily activities like brushing your teeth and combing your hair.

These activities include common daily activities like bathing and other basic daily hygiene like brushing your teeth or combing your hair, dressing yourself independently, or being able to adequately feed yourself (separate and apart from being able to cook or prepare food). 

Memory Loss

If you notice that you or your loved one is forgetting simple tasks such as watering their plants, feeding their animal(s), taking their medication, or locking the door, you may want to consider that they are experiencing memory loss. Over time, these signs may worsen and can render the environment unsafe for the individual. If these signs are persistent, it may be best to consider an assisted living or, depending on their level of acuity, memory care senior living facility which can provide access to staff trained to help those with memory impairments and provide around-the-clock care. 

Dietary Issues

Another sign that a loved one may be ready for senior living or at home senior care is if they are starting to neglect their diet and nutrition. Dietary issues may be noticeable if you or your loved one is experiencing abnormal weight loss or weight gain, which could be a product of possibly overeating or undereating.

As we age it can become increasingly difficult to prepare nutritionally adequate meals each day.

However, it is important to make sure that your loved ones and continuing to eat healthy, balanced meals even if there are no obvious physical signs. One huge benefit of a senior living community is that many offer high-quality dining rooms which make it easy for their residents to fulfill their daily nutritional needs.

Increase in Personal Injury

One of the dangers of continuing to live independently as you age is that it can increases your chance of suffering injuries around the home. While you will of course notice if a loved one has a major injury such as breaking a bone in a fall, there are also smaller injuries to keep track of such as accidentally cutting oneself, or an unexplained accumulation of bruises. Even if they appear to be small injuries, an increase in personal injuries can be a cause for concern. Depending on the level of these injuries, a loved one may be ready for either at home senior care or a move to a senior living community.

Loneliness or Demotivation

If you or your loved one is living alone, or showing signs of reluctance and demotivation, you may want to consider living in a more social environment. Social interaction is incredibly important as we age, and an increase in social activity has been shown to have important wellness and health benefits for older adults. In fact, one of the best benefits of life in a senior living community is that it provides easy opportunities for senior to stay social.

One of the best benefits of moving to a senior living community is all the social interaction that communities provide.

From seeing friends each day in the dining hall or fitness center, to taking classes or going on outings together, the social benefits of life at a senior living community are hard to replicate in another setting.

Signs of Dementia

Along with more general symptoms of memory loss, described above, it is important to also monitor loved ones for signs of dementia which can include aggressive behaviors, disorientation, getting lost, repetition, problems speaking, difficulty organizing, and difficulty concentrating. If you notice these signs, it is imperative that you consult with a doctor or other medical professional experienced with geriatrics or memory care. For many seniors struggling with dementia or other memory loss conditions, an assisted living or dedicated memory care facility may be the best living option.

We want what’s best for you, ourselves, and our families. Checking in on each other is always helpful to ensure ourselves that our loved ones are safe and secure. Furthermore, having open  conversations about adaptations such as senior living are beneficial to everyone involved. If you or your loved one is experiencing some of the signs above, senior living may be the most beneficial option for you. 

To learn more about how Sunbound can help make senior living more affordable for you or your loved one, send us an email at or request more information on Sunbound. Sunbound is the best way to pay for senior living and is on a mission to make senior living affordable for everyone.

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