What’s the Difference? Assisted Living vs. Independent Living

Sep 10, 2019

When it comes to senior living options, you have choices. If you’re an independent senior in the North Dallas area, you may be wondering what option is right for you both now and in the future. Many seniors, especially those who are in the early stages of their retirement and are in good health, weigh the options between assisted living and independent living. What are the differences? Which option is right for you? 

“Both assisted living and independent living have an emphasis on independence, a sense of community and healthy, active living,” says Doris Lea, Executive Director of Hidden Springs of McKinney. “And in both assisted and independent living, residents live ‘independently’ in their own private residence. However, there are differences between these two lifestyle types. Choosing the right option will depend on your personal abilities and preferences.”

What Is Independent Living?
Independent living is the most “hands-off” form of senior living with regards to care. Independent living residents are typically healthy, active seniors who are still able to live in their own home but may not want to for a variety of reasons. They may want to get rid of responsibilities and costs associated with homeownership, for example. Or they want the convenience of no longer having to cook, or they like the idea of living in a community of like-minded individuals. It’s all the perks of living on your own with none of the negatives. 

What Is Assisted Living?
Assisted living is often a choice for seniors who have more pressing health needs and require extra assistance to live independently. “Independently” in this sense means being able to do the things you love or want to do without being hampered by issues. In assisted living, residents receive the same benefits of independent living, plus additional support for tasks of daily living, medication management and other services. Some residents may need very minimal assistance, while others require a lot. It’s okay – in assisted living, care is designed around your needs and can flex easily.

The 4 Main Differences Between Independent Living and Assisted Living

There are four main differences between the lifestyle of assisted living and independent living. Depending on the community you choose, these differences can be huge or minimal. It all depends on the way the community is structured and how they define “independence.”

Difference #1: Lifestyle Focus 

In independent living, the focus is on providing convenience and an active, healthy, maintenance-free lifestyle. Medical and supportive care is not offered, and the community is more like living at an all-inclusive resort. Assisted living is focused on providing support and assistance to seniors so they can live as independently as possible, so caring and professional assistance for basic life tasks, commonly referred to as “Activities of Daily Living”, such as  mobility, bathing, medication management, meals, etc. is available whenever it’s needed. As care needs increase, more assistance is available. 

Difference #2: Amount of Care 

Independent living is, as the name implies, “independent.” Residents in this lifestyle are relatively healthy, are able to attend to basic needs and don’t require daily care assistance. Assisted living is for people with more health or support needs, but don’t need intensive care like you’d find in a nursing community. 

Difference #3: Contact with Staff

While independent living residents can have as much contact with the staff of the community as they wish, they may not have regular contact unless they spend a lot of time involved with community activities, eat at the dining room regularly or seek out staff interaction. In assisted living, on the other hand, the staff is more integrated and integral to the daily life of the community. They care for the physical needs of the residents but also provide social support by checking in with them and helping to develop new friendships with other residents. 

Difference #4: Price

Because independent living is a lifestyle versus a “care” level, the costs are usually lower. Assisted living, on the other hand, can be more expensive due to services and needs. However, in some cases, assisted living can be covered by some insurances as long as certain requirements are met. Hidden Springs Assisted Living will be licensed through the state of Texas.

Choosing the Right Option for You

Independent living residents don’t’ have to be in perfect health. And assisted living residents don’t necessarily “need” the services available. For some seniors, it’s a close call. What is the right answer for you in this case? It’s all up to you and your comfort level. Here are some questions to ask yourself if you’re wondering what’s the right option for you. 

  • If you had to spend a few days alone in your house, would you be safe? Or would your health be at risk? 
  • Are you healthy overall but wish you had more social opportunities? 
  • Do you have a serious medical condition that will get progressively worse? 
  • Have you let chores and tasks fall by the wayside because they’re simply too much? 

Hidden Springs of McKinney: Healthy Living for a Lifetime

If you’re trying to determine whether independent or assisted living is the right choice for you, Hidden Springs of McKinney invites you to visit and see the difference. Hidden Springs offers seniors everything needed to enjoy your retirement years in comfort and style – plus the peace of mind that comes from knowing that, if assistance or care is ever needed, it’s available in the place you’ve come to call home. 

For more information about our new community in North Dallas, please contact us at 972.445.9844.

Luxury Living in North Dallas

At Hidden Springs of McKinney, we understand how important location is to North Dallas seniors who are looking for an engaging, enriching retirement lifestyle. Located in McKinney, Texas, we are close to medical centers, arts and entertainment, outdoor opportunities and everything else you love about this area. Seniors who choose to make us their home can enjoy a range of trips, opportunities and activities while living their very best life thanks to our innovative focus on wellness. 

Active Retirement Living for a Healthy Tomorrow

The secret to a life well-lived awaits you at Hidden Springs of McKinney. Envisioned and developed by Madison Marquette, a company with a 25-year track record of investing in vibrant communities and a stellar reputation for developing luxury residences, you’ll discover all the possibilities your retirement brings … as well as the confidence of knowing your future is secure. 

Our beautifully appointed, active retirement living community is created for those who expect more out of life. Luxury living, gracious services, resort-quality amenities, engaging programs and stunning apartments in 15 floor plans are just a few of the benefits awaiting you. And with assisted living and memory care services offered on campus, you can retire with complete peace of mind, knowing that if needs change, the care you deserve is right at home.

To learn more about Hidden Springs of McKinney and discover The Secret to a Life Well Lived, call or visit us today. We’d be happy to schedule a tour and show you just how much our location can make your retirement experience exceptional. Call us today at 972.445.9844.