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Are Retirement Living Communities the New WoodStock for Boomers?

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Happy hour photo

 Retirement living communities are going to change and baby boomers are going to make sure that this occurs. Boomers have aways been trend setters and will change the way we view aging.  As the aging population retires, sooner or later, there is consideration of where to spend those golden years.

Seniors are considering retirement living communities as an option. They are also changing what they want from these communities. Since the largest growing segment of the population is over 90 and beyond, boomers want to avoid social isolation and become part of a community. They also realize that driving will become an issue as they age.

There is a growing trend and even legislation being addressed to offer senior retirement communities and continuing care communities liquor licenses. Yes, boomers want to be able to party well into their old age.

Of course, retirement communities and continuing care retirement communities presently have their own rules and regulations. Many organizations may have Happy Hours, but, many do not offer liquor at all. At the present, it is the norm not to offer liquor or have it easily available to those “of -age”.

A recent National Health Interview Survey polled found that of those polled, at least 50% of the men and 39% of the women reported having at least one drink a day. The data collected determined that some of the drinking habits stemmed from the need for socialization and company.

Of course, drinking alcohol, at any age, has it drawbacks. Seniors with existing health problems take many different medications. Those medications may have an adverse interaction or fatal occurrence when mixed with alcohol.  As we age, we experience problems with balance. Drinking can interfere with balance cause a fall and a broken hip or other bone.

Alcohol is also a depressant. For many seniors, drinking alcohol  further contributes to the cycle of depression.

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Boomers want the Right to Have a Drink

Retirees are adults that would like to make their own decisions when and where they have a drink. Presently, in most retirement communities, or continuing care retirement communities, there is no offer of wine or a cocktail with dinner.

Of course, a resident of a community may go out and purchase liquor and keep it in their own living quarters. Have having Happy Hour on the premises of a retirement community or have a beer or cocktail with dinner would not be revolutionary.

This is not about parties and college like keggers for aging seniors. It is about being able to indulge in a few drinks with friends, and enjoy the same lifestyle they have always had. Doing it responsibly, and being able to get out and socialize with out driving.

If the legislation passes, retirement communities will need to apply and purchase a liquor license, just as bars and restaurants do. The residents in the retirement communities would then be free to order a drink with their meals, maybe purchase it on the community campus or have it delivered to their room.

As we are living longer, people are living in retirement communities longer than ever before. This would give many seniors an option to have a drink as part of their lifestyle and live life as they did prior to moving into the community. A lifestyle of choices.

 

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