There are many options when it comes to retirement living. In fact, many provinces in Canada have their own unique terms for the different stages of living after retirement. When choosing which option is best for you, it is important to know the differences between all of these.

This article will break it down into the three types: independent living, assisted living, and long-term care. While the terms for each stage may vary by province, the care services are the same.

Independent Living

This style of living is best suited for people who require minimal to no professional care, and can manage day-to-day activities such as hygiene and feeding.

Typically, independent living refers to a residential facility with rooms, suites and/or apartments to be rented out by senior citizens. It allows for residents to enjoy their independence and daily preferences, but also provides an ample amount of social activity and interaction. It also provides services such as security, dining, assistance with laundry and cleaning, etc.

Assisted Living

Assisted living is for people who require more assistance and care in their daily lives. This care typically includes help with personal hygiene, meals and feeding assistance, mobility maintenance, transportation, and administration of medications.

Assisted living residences typically refer to a residential facility with rooms, suites and/or apartments to be rented out by senior citizens. These residences offer the same benefits as those of independent living: social interaction and organized activities, security, dining packages, assistance with daily chores such as laundry and cleaning.

In many cases, assisted and independent living facilities are in the same residential complex. This provides a perfect bridge between the two stages of life. It allows seniors the comforts of independent living but also ease in knowing that the support services of assisted living are available onsite, if and when they become necessary.

Long-Term Care

Long-term care (LTC) units provide for people who require the availability of 24-hour on-site nursing and care. These care needs are more complex than those in assisted living, and cannot be met in a home setting.

LTC units typically offer 3 different types of rooms: basic, semi-private, and private. Basic rooms have 3 or more beds, semi-privates have two, and privates have one single bed. They also provide residents with social activity and interaction, dining services, and relief from all daily chores.

LTC is a public service in Canada, though the details vary by province.