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What to Expect as an Adult Day Care Client
Understand what Adult Day Care Offers

Adult day care centers help older adults and disabled persons to better manage independence, to break the cycle of isolation and loneliness, and to actively participate in a peer community.

Adult day care promotes participants' well-being though social and health-related services. It offers planned programs of events, daily exercise, arts and crafts, and companionship with like-minded people.

The care center operates during daytime hours when family caregivers go to work, unable to care for the aging adult or person with a disability. One can expect good care and a safe place while the family is away during the day.

What to Expect as an Adult Day Care Client

As a client or participant of an adult day care center, you can expect more activities, have more social events, a stable environment, eat healthy foods, receive some health care (if it's a health day care center), and develop companionship with peers.

Change is rarely easy, especially for the elderly and the disabled. Some require a certain structure that gives them balance and consistency. Adult day care is an option for some who need reassurance of care, a healthy and safe place to go every day, Monday through Friday,

One builds friendship in a supportive community and help to maintain and grow independence. At the same time, adult day care alleviates the strain placed on family caregivers who devote time and energy to care for loved ones. that continually devote themselves to the care of their loved ones.

Benefits One Can Expect from Adult Day Care

Peer Connections at Adult Day Care
Peer Connections at Adult Day Care

The purpose of adult day care is not only to provide respite for family caregivers but to offer opportunities to avoid isolation, increase companionship, and to get out of the house participants.

Having time to connect, have conversations, learn new skills, and enjoy a peer community, are top priorities for care centers. The joyful activities that participants do not have access to sitting at home alone. .

Adult day care improves a participant's overall behavior and gives the family caregiver a needed break and time off.

Enhancements a Participant Can Expect

  • He's able to stay in the community while a family member works
  • She receives a break from the routine and person giving her care during the day
  • He gets a chance to make new friends
  • She gain structure and consistency

Assistance a Participant Can Expect

  • Receive assistance with eating
  • Medication reminders and management
  • Help with going to the bathroom
  • Help with mobility and safely moving around
  • Social services like counseling
  • Learn new skills
  • Receive mental stimulation
  • Get fit through exercise programs
  • Health monitoring, if needed and available ( blood pressure, food or liquid intake)
  • Served nutritious meals and snacks
  • Enjoy social interactions and activities
  • Receive occupational, physical, speech, therapy, if needed and available
  • Transportation services

Activities a Participant Can Expect

  • Crafts
    Arts - Crafts - Games
    Arts - Crafts - Games
  • Cooking
  • Exercise
  • Field trips
  • Games
  • Gardening
  • Holiday parties
  • Music therapy
  • Pet therapy
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Birthday celebrations
  • Outings
  • Luncheon events
  • Book club
  • Watch sports
  • Computer classes

Types of Care a Participant Can Expect

  • Planned care from the staff to ensure one receives appropriate care for their health or physical condition
  • Personal care for help with activities of daily living
  • Nursing care for help monitoring chronic conditions and managing medications
  • Transportation for those needing a ride to and from the center
  • Meals nutritious food for healthy meals
  • Caregiver support for family members who need a break and peace of mind when at work
  • Educational programs for family members
  • Activities and entertainment for participants to enjoy and stimulate mental functioning
  • Peer conversations and interaction for stimulation
  • Interaction with children for participants to get involved in local schools
  • Fitness and exercise for participants to increase well-being, flexibility, build muscle strength, and increase blood flow
  • Some programs offer services in the evenings and on weekends
  • Personal services like a hair cut and styled
  • Manicure and pedicure
  • Chair massage

Cost that Participants Can Expect

Adult day care costs less than nursing home care. Depending on how the center charges for services, one can expect to pay a flat daily rate, or a charge per hour. If one uses the services consistently from week to week, then a flat monthly rate applies.

  • Adult day care centers have a sliding scale, so participants pay what they can afford
  • Medicare does not cover the cost of adult day care.
  • Medicaid may offer coverage
  • Learn more about the costs of adult day health services

Basic Expectations

In its basic form, adult day care is a community-based support for older adults and persons living with a disability to opt out of isolation, to get out of the house regularly, and to form friendships with people like themselves.

Social and support services offered in a group setting and delivered in churches or local community centers.

Participants enjoy a safe environment, supervision, meals, activities, and social events. Adult Day care serves is a respite for family members and caregivers.

Providers of adult day care include services like:

  • Simple non-skilled custodial care
  • More advanced skilled services
  • On-site registered nurse
  • On-site health services
  • Clinical assessment
  • Clinical monitoring
  • Medication management
  • Custodial adult day care is not covered by Medicare, although Medicaid or other insurers cover some costs.

The U.S. Department of Aging found there were over 40 million Americans who were 65 years of age or older in 2010.

While many seniors enjoy good health, 37% surveyed in 2010 reported having some type of disability, ranging from vision problems to difficulty living independently. Currently, almost half of all adult day care clients suffer from some form of dementia.

Being a family caregiver and the primary care provider, you want what's best for your loved one during the time you cannot be there for a loved one because you work full-time. At an adult day care, you'll find needed care for a loved one and peace of mind when you're away from her.

To find an adult day care located near you, visit our adult day care directory.

Carol Marak
Carol Marak

After seven years of helping her aging parents, Carol Marak has become a dedicated senior care writer. Since 2007, she has been doing the research to find answers to common concerns: housing, aging and health, staying safe and independent, and planning long-term.