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What’s the Difference Between Assisted Living and Independent Living?

The holidays are meant to be a time filled with joy, peace, and cherished moments with loved ones. But if your parents are getting on in years, it’s also a time to notice any changes in their health and discuss what options are best for their future.

Everyone’s needs are different, and it becomes more apparent with age – and during times of high activity – just how important it is to have a plan in place for the future. For older adults and their family members, a senior living community can be a comforting solution to finding both an active lifestyle and levels of care, all in one place.

If you’re beginning to explore senior living options and healthcare services for a loved one, consider a community like The Grand Royale, just north of Kansas City, MO, in Gladstone. We are a retirement community that offers both Independent and Assisted Living.

Before you make a decision, learn everything you need to know about these two living options, the major differences between them, and which lifestyle makes the most sense for your loved one. Here’s some basic information to get you started.

What is Independent Living?

Independent Living communities are made for older adults who are active and want to spend less time worrying about the everyday stresses that come with owning a home and more time on pursuing their passions instead. These adults don’t need regular care or daily assistance with tasks.

At The Grand Royale, Independent Living residents have access to an engaging lifestyle. They enjoy days filled with social opportunities, activities, wellness programs, and the ability to connect with other people who are in their same age group and who share common interests.

Independent Living at our community comes with the freedom for residents to choose how they live each day. Whether your loved one prefers staying in or socializing with others, there’s something for everyone. Independent Living residents benefit from:

  • Spending time with friends exploring our neighborhood in Gladstone

  • Enjoying delicious meals in a variety of dining spaces

  • Salon treatment and pampering at our on-site Bombshell's Beauty Bar

  • Taking advantage of our scheduled transportation services or allowing us to schedule an Uber or Lyft to nearby attractions

  • Checking out our calendar of events and getting inspired to try something new

  • Relaxing and rejuvenating in their beautiful apartment

  • Having date night in our movie theater

  • Reliving childhood pastimes, like savoring ice cream at Wayne’s Creamery

  • Competing in a friendly game of pool or other billiards games

All these incredible amenities and more convenient services are included in the monthly fee, along with the choice of spacious studio, one-bedroom, or two-bedroom apartments. Your loved one will find modern conveniences and plenty of other advantages to their new residence, including:

  • Updated flooring

  • New lighting fixtures

  • Abundant natural light

  • Generous closet space

  • Fully equipped kitchens

  • Spacious bathrooms

  • In-home washer and dryer

  • Private patios

With so much to do, your loved one will find it easy to leave behind worries and focus on a worry-free future. The best part is that if your family member ever needs additional care in Assisted Living, their transition will be smooth, and every service will be personalized to their new needs.

What is Assisted Living?

In an Assisted Living community, residents have their own living space while also having access to additional care and support as needed. At The Grand Royale, our staff is available 24/7 to help residents with activities of daily living (ADLs). This includes assistance with dressing, toileting, bathing, grooming, medication management, and anything else that gets in the way of having a good day. Although additional care is available, residents are encouraged to be as independent as possible.

Assisted Living at The Grand Royale focuses on providing the best care while igniting a renewed sense of purpose. Residents in our Assisted Living level of care have access to the same high-quality amenities as Independent Living residents, along with these additional conveniences:

  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner in Reba’s Room dining area

  • Snacks and beverages available from morning to night

  • À la carte incontinence care services for $150/month

  • On-site skilled nursing

  • Therapeutic dietary plans

  • 24/7 licensed nursing care

  • On-site physical, occupational and speech therapy

  • Scheduled transportation

Assisted Living residents live in studio and one-bedroom apartments with easy access to every service and amenity in our community.

Three major differences between Independent Living and Assisted Living

While we do encourage residents in both Independent and Assisted Living to live as freely as possible, these living options also have their differences.

How do they differ? The following three factors are the simplest way to distinguish between Independent Living and Assisted Living:

  1. Medical care. In Assisted Living, residents at The Grand Royale have guaranteed access to 24/7 licensed nursing care and more medical supervision than those in Independent Living.

  2. Family involvement. We work with residents’ family members for both Independent Living and Assisted Living, but in Assisted Living, loved ones play a more integral role in the everyday care and supervision of the resident. For Independent Living, family members and other guests are encouraged to visit residents at their leisure, without planning involved.

  3. Programming. Independent Living residents are able to participate in all programs and feel comfortable doing so without supervision. Assisted Living residents also have access to engaging and life-enriching activities, but these programs generally focus more on maintaining physical and cognitive abilities.

What’s the best senior living lifestyle for your loved one?

You don’t need to be a medical expert to recognize when a parent’s mental or physical abilities are declining. In fact, ignoring the signs makes matters worse. Being proactive can make a huge impact on your aging parent’s long-term health.

If you notice any of the following physical or behavioral changes, we recommend looking into an Assisted Living community with staff members who are dedicated to providing the highest level of attention and care:

  • Trouble getting out of a chair/sofa or bed

  • Difficulty bathing or using the restroom

  • Low energy

  • Loss of balance

  • Lack of hygiene

  • General forgetfulness

  • Confusion or loss of focus

Alternatively, if your loved one is still active, can manage ADLs on their own, and is simply seeking a lifestyle without the hassles of homeownership, an Independent Living community is the right choice for them.

Your trusted Independent and Assisted Living community in Kansas City.

The Grand Royale is the place to be for active seniors, along with those who need extra assistance. We provide 24/7, dedicated Assisted Living services that bring peace and comfort to residents and their families. Each day is met with exceptional care and convenient amenities and programs to make worry-free living possible. Learn more about our lifestyles today.


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