California’s active generation of seniors is more independent than ever before. Some remain in their homes, even when they reach an advanced age. However, most older adults need some help as they age, even if it is just with one or two activities of daily living, so they decide to move to senior communities designed with their needs in mind. There is no “one-size-fits-all” community that suits everyone, so it’s crucial for seniors and their families to evaluate and compare options before choosing. It is especially critical to determine which types of therapies are offered. Physical, occupational, and other therapies enhance wellness and keep seniors active for as long as possible. 

How Therapy Benefits Residents?

Residents of an assisted living community can use therapy to improve their overall quality of life. Therapy decreases the risk of falls and helps seniors increase endurance, which allows them to remain as independent as possible.

Communities may have designated therapy areas, or residents can arrange for sessions in their apartments. When seniors’ doctors prescribe therapies, community staff arrange sessions. Working one-on-one with seniors allows therapists to note each person’s progress and communicate their findings with other members. 

Therapists help improve an entire community’s wellness as they work with individuals. For example, these professionals can often help seniors transition from an independent life by assisting them with daily task challenges. In fact, many doctors will prescribe therapy after a big change, like moving to an assisted living community.   

Therapy and Dementia Care

According to HTS specialists, various therapies are helpful to seniors in declining health. Therapists are in a position to notice the most minor changes in clients’ health, which allows them to create strategies that help residents compensate for health issues.  

For example, residents who require memory care can benefit from occupational therapy that helps them with activities of daily living. Therapists will coordinate with other caregivers, staff members, and family members to make changes that address declining cognition or physical abilities.  

While there is no way to stop dementia’s progressive decline, therapy can help those with memory issues maintain and maximize the abilities they still have. Mood swings and personality changes are expected in those with dementia, and therapists are trained to help soothe residents’ frustrations and agitation. 

The Importance of Occupational Therapy

California residents of assisted living homes enjoy a better quality of life, more independence, and increased wellness when they have access to occupational therapy (OT). With that in mind, communities such as Summerfield of Redlands offer OT and PT (physical therapy) groups. Doctors can prescribe OT/PT when a senior’s environment changes.  

The American Occupational Therapy Association says that therapists are well-trained to spot any issues that could cause community residents difficulties. Professionals look for problems limiting seniors’ ability to handle everyday tasks, educational or vocational pursuits, or leisure activities.  

Therapists set goals, coordinated with a doctor’s recommendations, that can restore function, promote health, and compensate for diminishing skills. Therapies might focus on bathing, dressing, grooming, managing money, or homemaking.  

Benefits of Physical Therapy

Older adults often have aches and pains that can decrease their mobility. Many seniors with mobility issues move to senior communities because they need more help than families and friends can provide. Even though most senior communities offer respite care that gives home caregivers a break, older adults often fare better in communities. 

In addition to a trained staff that can help them, physical therapy programs help strengthen weak muscles, increase mobility, and extend endurance.  Therapists also help residents recover from injuries and illnesses. PT is especially crucial after a fracture or any mobility-limiting problem.  

How Speech Therapy Helps?

In some cases, doctors may prescribe speech therapy for residents in senior communities. Speech therapy is a rehabilitation process that addresses issues with speaking and swallowing. 

Therapy can strengthen weakened vocal cords, a problem common in older adults. Weak vocal cords can make speaking difficult, but exercises help. Various conditions of aging may also cause swallowing issues, and therapists can help with those, too. 

Therapists work with seniors who have dementia since speech and language therapy can help improve brain function linked to communication. Exercise may also improve cognitive processes associated with speech, including problem-solving and memory.   

Respiratory Therapy Helps with Breathing Issues

Because colds can often turn to pneumonia in older adults, senior community residents must have access to respiratory therapy. Doctors can prescribe the treatments, and community staff members ensure that residents meet with therapists and receive therapy. 

Therapists help those who are struggling to breathe. They use tapping and massage to loosen mucus and improve breathing.  

When families search for a senior community, it is vital to ensure residents can access any therapies they may need. Physical, occupational, speech, and respiratory therapy benefit community residents and can improve their overall well-being.

Summerfield of Redlands is a memory care community offering exceptional services and amenities in Redlands, CA. The friendly staff ensures each resident enjoys the best quality of life possible. The community’s goal is to maximize each resident’s independence and health.