As we get older so our thoughts turn to retirement. But our thoughts usually don’t turn to the stage after the cruises around the Med or the taking up of a new hobby. The twilight years can be difficult for some people as they find themselves more and more dependant on others. Sometimes it can seem inevitable that you will end up in a residential care home – but is that actually what you want?


Do you like your family?

Whilst a whopping nine out of ten people say they think it is important to keep in touch with elderly relatives, the actual number who do is closer to half. In residential care family can be reluctant to visit. So if you don’t really like your family then perhaps residential care would suit you. If you do, then home care services could be the perfect choice.


Free-flow or set routine?

Most care homes have some sort of routine. Meals are served when it is convenient to the kitchen and activities take place at fixed times throughout the day. If you thrive on structure and knowing exactly what’s going to happen and when then you’ll like residential care.


The Big Outdoors

A third of residential care home residents never leave their homes so if you’re happy enough watching Gardener’s World and Countryfile then you’ll be in good company. Many homes have pleasantly planted gardens with nice warm conservatories if you fancy a bit of a change.


Do you hate pets?

It can be tricky finding a care home that will accept pets so generally they are pet free environments. Which is good news if you’re not really a pet lover as you can be confident that no one else will have a pet either.


Do you want a change of scenery?

Unless you happen to live next door to the perfect care home you will need to move. Depending on your area this could mean quite a significant change in the local surroundings perhaps from a quiet cul-de-sac to a compound near a main road! Life could be more interesting but it could also be a lot less peaceful. Even if your care home is not very far away you will have to decide what of your personal effects you take with you and which you pass on to friends and family. You might even decide to sell your house now to fund your care home place.


Are you gregarious?

Living in a care home means you will get to meet lots of new people. Although you will have your own room – or even a small flat – there will be new members of staff to get to know and lots of new friends to make in the common room. If you like meeting new people and get on well with strangers then you’re sure to love living in residential care.

Residential care is just one option from a whole spectrum of alternatives including remaining in your own home with family or professional support from a live in care worker. Take your time to choose the best option for you.