There are many factors to consider when choosing a senior living home for your parent or loved one. You may be considering the type of care available and staff qualifications or recreational activities a community offers. There are also practical aspects to consider, like pricing and how close a community is to your home.
Another factor to consider is whether your loved one would prefer to move to a small or large retirement community. While both options have unique pros and cons, we firmly believe in the value of a small, close-knit residential care home. Here are a few benefits of entrusting a smaller assisted living home with your loved one’s care.
Better Staffing and Highly Personalized Service
Smaller residential care homes naturally have fewer staff members in rotation. This typically means that residents get used to seeing the same faces and are, therefore, able to form closer relationships with caregivers and staff. When a senior receives support with intimate personal care activities like bathing and toileting, knowing and trusting caregivers can make a world of difference.
Small, assisted living communities also often have higher caregiver-to-resident ratios. This means that each caregiver has fewer residents under their care. With a higher staff-to-resident ratio, seniors can benefit from a more personalized experience. For example, pressure and time constraints might mean they can only meet each resident’s basic needs in a larger community where staff are responsible for the care of many seniors.
While larger communities often try to accommodate residents’ individual likes and dislikes, it isn’t always possible or realistic. On the contrary, when staff has more time to spend with residents, care can be tailored towards the need of the individual, rather than using ‘cookie cutter’ approaches that focus on getting things done quickly. This can allow seniors to keep their preferred habits, routines, and daily rituals in place.
When caregivers have more time, they can help residents’ complete activities of daily living (ADLs). With the freedom to truly get to know a resident’s confidence and abilities, caregivers can provide just the right amount of assistance while supporting a resident’s need for independence. Being empowered to stay as independent as possible helps seniors maintain dignity while retaining a sense of control and purpose, improving the overall quality of life.
Friendly, Close-Knit Community
It’s much easier for small residential care homes to develop into supportive and close-knit communities. In an environment where everyone knows everyone, staff members, residents, and family caregivers can feel comfortable and truly at home. Community events feel more intimate, with each resident being able to get involved, socialize, and build great new friendships. This quiet, smaller-scale community atmosphere can make it easier for friendships to form between residents naturally, potentially making the transition to assisted living a little easier for more introverted seniors.
The sense of community offered by small providers can also be incredibly beneficial for family caregivers. Moving a parent or loved one to a residential care home is often emotional, mainly when a senior is reluctant to move or in poor health. Family caregivers are more likely to regularly see the same faces in small senior communities with fewer residents. This, combined with social community events, means families often connect and form supportive friendships with other family caregivers. In small senior living homes, management is also more likely to be directly involved in community life, personally getting to know residents and their families.
The ‘Private Home’ Feel
Smaller assisted living communities typically feel less clinical than ‘big box’ facilities. Housing fewer residents means it’s easier for small communities to be designed like private homes. This approach can have many benefits for seniors. Perhaps most importantly, a more ‘home-like’ feel may make the transition to a residential care home much easier for seniors anxious about the change.
A small floor plan and familiar layout can also make navigating around the home much easier to get used to for seniors and family caregivers alike. Small communities often boast a beautiful, boutique feel with sumptuous living spaces and bedrooms, and there may be more leeway for residents to personalize their space with furniture and décor that suits their tastes.
In summary, the main benefits of choosing a smaller senior living home are:
- Easier to personalize care to suit individual residents.
- Typically, higher staff-to-resident ratios.
- Feels more like a private residential home.
- It may be easier for seniors anxious about retirement to settle in and feel at home.
- Opportunity for family caregivers to build a support system.
Silverleaf Eldercare is an excellent example of a genuinely loving and close-knit senior living home offering personalized, compassionate care. Our service is centered around respect, love, family, and care, and our residents live in a beautiful boutique, comfortable and modern residence that genuinely feels like home. With a high caregiver-to-resident ratio, we can guarantee our residents receive the time and support they need and deserve.
To learn more about the benefits of moving to a small senior living home like ours, get in touch today to arrange a tour and meet our dedicated staff members.