Dear Donna:

My husband and I would like to take a vacation this spring so we can take our twin girls to Disney World. It is our last chance to do so before they start Kindergarten next fall. The catch is I am the primary caregiver for my mother. She has lived with us since she had a stroke last summer. While she tries to be independent and active, she has some disabilities that prevent her from staying alone.

I’ve talked with home care agencies about providing care for her while we are gone. But I would really feel more comfortable if she had someone nearby around the clock.

Can you explain how respite care works in an assisted living community in Michigan?

Kind Regards,

Ellie in Grand Haven, Michigan


Dear Ellie:

Your situation is a perfect example of how families can benefit from respite care in an assisted living community. Respite allows an older loved one to enjoy a short-term stay at a senior living community while the family caregiver goes on vacation or takes a break from the around the clock demands of caregiving.

What Types of Services are Included in Respite Care?

From medication management to support with personal care needs, a respite stay provides seniors with the support they need when you can’t be there to help.

Most senior living communities, like the Heritage Senior Communities across Michigan, have furnished suites for respite guests to enjoy. Your mom will have access to the same services and amenities that a permanent resident of the community does.

In addition to support with personal care, a respite stay in most senior living communities includes:

  • Three well-balanced meals each day served restaurant style in the dining room.
  • A wide variety of life enrichment and wellness activities to participate in with other residents.
  • Supportive services such as housekeeping, laundry and transportation.

We always encourage families who are considering a short-term respite stay for a senior loved one to visit us in person. One of our team members will be happy to take you and your mom on a tour. You can even stay for lunch!

Being familiar with the staff and the community will help to decrease any anxiety you and your mom have about your leaving town for vacation.

I hope this information is helpful, Ellie. And I hope you enjoy Disney World with your family!



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