Independent Living vs. Assisted Living:
Which one is best for you?

For those considering the idea of a senior living community or simply making the move to retirement, it’s great to live in a time when there are so many options for older adults. The challenge is determining which option is the best fit for you or your family member.

That’s why we always recommend starting with a basic understanding of the terminology. Specifically, what’s the difference between independent living and assisted living? The answer is actually straightforward after you understand the separate terms.

Independent living:
For those living on their own

As the name implies, independent living means seniors live independently in their own private spaces—often apartment-style homes. Most seniors choose this option to alleviate the hassles of home maintenance and upkeep, plus the opportunity to participate in a calendar of onsite activities with other active seniors.

Assisted living:
For those requiring care each day

Unlike independent living, residents in assisted living require help with normal activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, and taking medications. Residents typically have a small living space and eat with other residents in a community dining room for each meal. While residents are encouraged to participate in activities, the emphasis is on care.

How to determine which lifestyle fits your needs.

These definitions provide a good starting point for determining what type of community is best suited for your specific situation. For instance, Sierra Winds Life Care retirement community in Peoria, Arizona focuses on independent living with an emphasis on helping residents lead a healthy, fulfilling life.

Residents of Sierra Winds choose from a variety of floor plans, ranging from a spacious studio to a two-bedroom apartment the size of a home—all designed to serve as a “home base” for active seniors who wish to continue, or even expand, their active lifestyle. Sierra Winds also offers an extensive activities calendar featuring activities and programs centered around 8 Dimensions of Wellness: physical, social, intellectual, emotional, environmental, vocational, spiritual, and health services.

Sierra Winds residents also benefit from the many services available as part of the monthly fee. These services include weekly housekeeping, flat laundry and maintenance services, flexible dining in the Sierra Bistro or The Palms restaurant, 24-hour emergency call system, and more. All of these elements give residents more freedom to pursue an active, independent lifestyle.

Health services available for life’s unexpected moments.

While Sierra Winds does not offer assisted living services, it does offer residents the full use of our onsite Health Center, if ever needed. This is a key benefit of the Life Care concept at Sierra Winds—combining an independent lifestyle with peace of mind knowing residents have priority access to onsite health services if ever needed. These vital health services include:

  • Medicare-certified skilled nursing care including both short- and long-term care.
  • Rehabilitation center with licensed, geriatric-trained therapists who provide physical, occupational and speech therapies.
  • Post-observation stay that bridges the gap between a hospital stay and returning home.

The active lifestyle at Sierra Winds does require new residents to live independently. For those who visit our community seeking assistance with daily activities, we are more than happy to make recommendations for assisted living communities in the area.

To learn more about the possibilities of independent senior living at Sierra Winds, call (623) 977-0807. We welcome potential residents and family members to join us for a tour and complimentary lunch in the Sierra Bistro.