What are Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)?

As you age, you might notice that you need assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs) that you didn’t think twice about before. You might need assistance due to a fall, an injury or simply due to the natural effects of aging. ADLs are the basic activities that you do throughout your day that allow you to be an autonomous person, such as making a meal, driving a car or using the restroom.

If you notice yourself or a loved one start to lose the ability to complete ADLs on your/their own, you should consider your options for assistance, whether through an assisted living community or in-home help.

What are ADLs & why are they important?

ADLs are activities of daily living. Your ability to perform ADLs without assistance is directly linked to independent living and the quality of your life. Typically, everyone completes an activity from one of these categories every day.  They can commonly be broken down into 5 categories:

  • Personal Hygiene: your ability to bathe, brush your hair & teeth and trim your fingernails.
  • Continence Management: your mental and physical ability to properly use the bathroom.
  • Dressing: your ability to dress and pick out appropriate clothing for different occasions.
  • Feeding: your ability to prepare a meal and/or feed yourself without assistance.
  • Ambulating: your ability to change positions and walk without assistance.

What do I do if I can’t perform ADLs properly?

If you notice that you or a loved one are no longer able to perform ADLs properly, it is best to be proactive. It might seem uncomfortable or scary to reach out and ask for assistance, but you have nothing to be ashamed of. What you are experiencing is a natural part of aging, and you deserve the chance to live with dignity, respect, and as much autonomy as possible.  

You can reach out to any of the following if you need assistance:

  • A close family member or loved one. Don’t be afraid to communicate with a family member or loved one that you are struggling and need some help. They can assist you in finding the care that is right for you and provide you with support.
  • A medical professional. Medical professionals such as your primary care doctor can be a great resource when you are looking at your options for care. Consult your doctor for their professional opinion on what type of care would be best for you, and for service recommendations in your area.
  • The hospital where you receive care. Your hospital will most likely have social workers, nurses, & therapists who are knowledgeable about solutions for problems with daily living, and can recommend both in-home and assisted living facilities.

Where can I go for assistance with daily living?

Knowing that yourself or your loved one has proper round-the-clock care provides peace of mind. When you are ready to make the step into living with confidence, there are two types of assistance available to you:

  • Assisted Living Facilities. There are many benefits to moving to an assisted living facility, from available round-the-clock care to social activities and transportation. Moving to an assisted living facility is a great option if you need some assistance in your day to day life, while still maintaining independence. Living at an assisted living facility can also help with isolation and feelings of loneliness. When you are looking for an assisted living facility for yourself or a loved one, make sure that they have a strong sense of community, integrity and respect for their residents.
  • In-Home Assistance. If you want to stay in your home, but can no longer perform ADLs properly, in-home assistance is necessary to assure your safety and quality of living. The main benefit of in-home assisted living is receiving help with daily care, while still living in the place that you are comfortable or familiar with.

If you or a loved one are interested in becoming a member of an assisted living community that is focused on individuality, security, and an excellent quality of living, contact Culpepper Place.

We would love to talk with you about your options and give you a tour of our facilities.