Basic facts about this important source of respite care.

“Normally, adult day care is used to relieve the caregiver or his or her duties for the day while ensuring that the care recipient will still receive the proper care in a safe, friendly environment. These centres usually operate during normal business hours five days a week, and some centres also offer additional services during evenings and weekends. Currently, there are more than 4,000 of these programs operating in the United States.”

best care of adults at adult day care centre

“In general, there are three main types of adult day care centres: those that focus primarily on social interaction, those that provide medical care, and those dedicated to Alzheimer’s care. Many of these facilities are affiliated with other organizations, including home care agencies, skilled nursing facilities, medical centres, or other senior service providers. The average participant in this type of program is a 76-year-old female who lives with a spouse, adult children, or other family or friends. About 50 percent of these individuals have some form of cognitive impairment and more than half require assistance with at least two daily living activities.”

“Regulation of adult day care centers is at the discretion of each state, although the National Adult Day Services Association (NADSA) offers some overall guidelines in its Standards and Guidelines for Adult Day Care. The staff usually consists of a social worker, an activity director, and an activity aide, who often is a certified nursing aide (CNA). Many adult day care centers also rely on volunteers to run various activities.”

Benefits & Services

“While adult day care can be a great resource for caregivers, many refuse to consider this option. Some worry that their loved ones will resent participating in such a program, while others feel guilty at the thought of leaving their loved ones in another person’s care. When it works correctly, however, adult day care can improve the care recipient’s overall behaviour and provide the caregiver with much-needed time off.”

Generally, a care recipient can benefit from adult day care because:

  • It allows him or her to stay in his or her community while the caregiver goes to work
  • It gives him or her a break from the caregiver
  • It provides needed social interaction
  • It provides greater structure to his or her daily activities

Adult day care facilities can provide a variety of services and activities, including:

  • Assistance with eating, taking medicines, toileting, and/or walking
  • Counseling
  • Educational programs or mental stimulation
  • Exercise programs
  • Health monitoring (e.g., blood pressure, food or liquid intake)
  • Podiatry care
  • Preparation of meals and snacks
  • Social activities
  • Therapy (occupational, physical, speech, etc.)
  • Transportation services

Social activities in adult day care centers can include:

  • Crafts
  • Cooking
  • Exercise
  • Field trips
  • Games
  • Gardening
  • Holiday parties
  • Music therapy
  • Pet therapy
  • Relaxation techniques


“Adult day care is an option for senior living that allows elderly adults to be cared for in a daytime facility. In fact, the National Adult Day Services Association (NADSA) reports that more than 150,000 seniors utilized day care services on a daily basis among a total of 5,684 adult day care centers in the US, as of 2014. This type of senior care provides aging adults with medical services, cognitive stimulation, social interaction, educational activities, meals, and in some cases transportation to and from the facility. To help you determine if adult day care is a viable option for your needs, here is a list of questions to ask when choosing adult day care. In addition, you will learn about the types of adult day care, along with benefits, services, and activities available in this type of senior housing facility.”


“Before choosing any adult day care service, visit the facility to provide a visual check and learn more about the centre. Speak with the staff members to help you determine if this is the right centre for your senior family member or loved one. Try to talk to people who are attending the centre to see what they have to say regarding the day care service. Also, find out what the overall cost will be for the centre, and get all of the paperwork and documentation available. Read through everything and mark any areas of concern or note any questions you may have, and get clarification in writing before you sign any contracts for service.”


  • “In addition to meals and supervision, adult day care centres provide services aimed at the needs of this age group. This can include counselling and physical therapy to help seniors overcome emotional or physical needs. To help seniors boost their health and wellness, day care centres often offer exercises and recreational outlets, as well as health screenings, medication management, and onsite medical care. As a form of respite care, some senior centres offer evening care to help caregivers who may work or otherwise be unavailable during these hours. Additionally, some adult day cares provide transportation to and from the centre each day.”
  • “According to the National Adult Day Services Association, in the US 90 percent of day care centres for adults provide cognitive stimulation. These types of programs may include card games, board games, and creative projects, such as quilting or putting together puzzles. Among adult day care centres approximately 80 percent offer memory training, such as through mental stimulation games or social engagement that encourages a recall of previous events. Seventy-five percent of adult day service providers offer educational programs. These may include hosting book groups, having current events discussions, or doing crosswords.”
  • “Know if the adult day care provide transportation for seniors to the centre? If so, what type of vehicle is used and is it equipped to handle wheelchairs, walkers, and other aids? Is the vehicle easily accessible by individuals with special needs? Does the vehicle have seat belts and/or other applicable safety devices? Who is the driver and do they have a valid commercial driver’s license (CDL) Class B that permits them to carry passengers?”
  • “All seniors receive Medicare, which is the national form of social insurance for senior citizens. However, Medicare does not cover any costs associated with adult day care services. So if you only have Medicare insurance, then chances are you will not receive any financial assistance from your insurance coverage.”

Benefits of Senior Day Care

“By going to senior day care, elderly adults can overcome a host of age-related issues including depression, loneliness, fatigue, and loss of brain function. Seniors are able to socialize, learn, move, and experience daily routines under the guidance of professional caregivers. At the same time, caregivers who are responsible for seniors are able to have a respite period. This is necessary for preventing caregiver burnout. Overall, the choice of adult day care is an ideal solution for caregivers and seniors who are not ready or do not need to transition to a full-time care facility, such as a nursing home or retirement community. Adult day care provides just enough interaction and stimulation in a controlled environment, without forcing the seniors to experience a complete upheaval in their own home setting. By using this guide you are fully prepared to choose the best type of adult day care for the senior in your life.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *