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Difference Between Nursing Homes and Assisted Living

Find The Best Fit For Your Loved One

elderly woman hugging her dog

As you begin looking into different types of communities, you’ll need to become familiar with the spectrum of senior living in order to find what’s best for your aging loved one. The key is learning about each individual community and what it has to offer – then determining what best fits the unique needs of your loved one and your family.

Highpoint at Stonecrest is a resource for families in the heart of Florida, helping families as they navigate the journey of senior care. Below you’ll find information about the differences between assisted living and/or nursing home, which we hope helps you determine the ideal option for you and your loved one.

Learn About Options In Senior Care

What is a Nursing Home?

Nursing homes are a category of residential care for seniors who require 24-hour medical supervision and/or need assistance for most or all of Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). Generally thought of as one step below hospital acute care, nursing homes provide around-the-clock care by trained medical staff, such as a registered nurse or therapist.


What are the advantages?

  • Residents of nursing home communities typically have high care needs due to physical or mental conditions that require routine skilled nursing services and/or 24-hour medical assistance.
  • Life-enriching activities are usually provided, giving residents more daily interaction and amenities as compared at-home care.


What are the disadvantages

  • Because of the high level of medical attention, residents have less privacy than in other types of care and typically share a room.
  • The quality of skilled nursing care can vary widely so it’s important to research communities and check their state ratings.


What is Assisted Living?

Assisted living describes a type of residential community for seniors providing living quarters, support services and health care designed for those who need some level of support with their day-to-day routines. Usually, these services include a combination of meals, laundry, housekeeping, medication management and assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) such as bathing, dressing, grooming, toileting and mobility as needed.


What are the advantages?

  • Seniors in assisted living communities generally have a higher level of privacy and independence, living in individual apartments and choosing how to spend their time.
  • Residents are provided with individualized support for daily activities while having a variety of options for dining and programming.


What are the disadvantages?

  • Some seniors may view assisted living as taking away their independence and may be opposed to leaving their home.
  • Assisted living communities vary in their quality of care, services provided and associated costs so families should look closely at what is included.


The main difference between the two is that nursing homes provide medical and personal care in a more clinical setting, while assisted living provides personalized support as needed in an apartment setting — often including programming and activities. Highpoint at Stonecrest offers three levels of living, all of which are tailored to the needs of our residents. Whether in independent living, assisted living or memory care, you’ll find Highpoint’s hallmark hospitality, innovation and quality create a seamless experience for our residents and their families. Contact us to learn more.