Senior Living in the Midwest: Statistics, Options, and Costs

In the United States, senior citizen age is considered to be aged 65 and older, although some senior citizen perks include those aged 55 and older. When it comes to seniors living in the Midwest, the statistics are fairly representative of the U.S. as a whole, with the exception of Michigan and Ohio. The median age (half the population is older and the other half is younger) in the Midwest is around 38.5 years— excluding Michigan and Ohio where it’s closer to 40 years.

The Midwest is also one of the most affordable regions to live in compared to the rest of the U.S., making it a great place to retire. Here’s a look at senior living in the Midwest.

Independent Living Facilities

Independent living facilities are also known as retirement communities, and they accommodate adults ages 55 and older. There are over 3,000 independent living facilities in the Midwest for seniors who have adopted a healthy lifestyle and don’t require round-the-clock care. These facilities are usually made up of apartment-style dwellings and offer several amenities, such as:

  • Gyms
  • Meeting rooms
  • Pools
  • Tennis courts
  • Walking trails

Other services, such as transportation, meals, laundry, and housekeeping are also provided for residents, even though they’re still fully independent. Monthly costs for living in these retirement communities can range anywhere from $400 to $5,400, depending on the state and the city. Larger cities like Chicago, Detroit, and St. Louis tend to be more expensive compared to other areas.

Assisted Living Facilities

Unlike independent living facilities, assisted living facilities provide much more care to their residents. The level of assistance can vary, from needing help with just a few activities of daily living (e.g., dressing, bathing, toileting, etc.) to needing 24/7 medical care. Monthly costs for assisted living can range anywhere from $750 to $9,780 across the 5,000+ facilities in the Midwest.

Nursing homes are the most well-known type of assisted living facility, yet seniors in this type of care are more prone to elder abuse because they’re more vulnerable. Out of all the midwestern states, Minnesota ranks the highest (number 2) for the best care, while Indiana ranks the lowest (number 36). However, anyone who has been a victim of nursing home abuse should contact a personal injury attorney for justice.

Specialty Living Facilities

Specialty living facilities are those that accommodate seniors (and people of all ages) with certain medical conditions that require specialized care. Examples include memory care facilities (for those with different types of dementia), hospice care (for those with terminal illnesses), and facilities for temporary relief for caregivers, such as respite care and adult day care centers. Respite care provides care for a senior and relieves the caregiver for a few hours up to a few weeks, while adult day care centers provide relief for only a few hours.

Caring for an aging loved one with complicated medical conditions often leads to burnout, which is the biggest cause of elder abuse in the U.S.  The Midwest has hundreds of respite care centers and thousands of other specialty care centers to provide the correct type of care for seniors in need.

Aging in Place

Aging in place refers to staying in your home as opposed to moving into a facility. The majority of seniors prefer to age in place and studies have shown that aging in place is the most beneficial for senior mental health. Seniors love the familiarity and comfort of their own homes, and it’s one of the most affordable living options for seniors. The only major costs would be minor home renovations to make the home safer for senior living.

In addition to the home being safe, seniors must be healthy and independent to be able to successfully age in place. This means that seniors with minor health concerns may still be able to age in place, especially with home health aide services available. However, seniors who need more frequent and specialized care should consider assisted living.

The bottom line is that seniors (and their families) should choose the living arrangement that will best serve them. Independent seniors have the option to remain in their own homes, move into a retirement community, or even a vacation home. Seniors who need extra assistance should choose the assisted living/medical facility that will best suit their needs. This includes choosing a quality facility that will make sure that all of their needs are met.

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