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Senior Home Care Vs. Adult Day Care: 4 Things To Compare

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If your senior parent lives alone and is beginning to need more assistance than usual, it might be time to consider getting help for him or her. If you no longer feel safe allowing your parent to be home alone, now might be a good time to consider looking into senior home care services and adult day care services. Both are great options for seniors, but there are several differences that you should be aware of.


Senior home care services offer in-home services. This means that your parent can stay home, and a worker will come to him or her. Adult day care services are those that your senior parent must go to. These are great for people that cannot be home alone at all, but this option might not be the most convenient for you.

While home care services come to your parent, you might end up with the responsibility of dropping off your parent at the adult day care each day, and picking him or her up at the end of the day.

Not only might this be inconvenient, it may also be time-consuming and stressful, especially if your parent does not want to go. In-home services are the more convenient option in most situations.

Hours of Services

One of the other benefits of senior home services is that most companies offer services 24 hours a day. While you do not have to hire the company to send workers for 24 hours a day, you will at least have this option if it is needed.

Most adult day care centers offer services during normal business hours, and they may only offer these five days a week. If your parent needed care during the evening hours, an adult day care center would not even be an option.


While senior home care services offer the benefits of convenience and 24-hour services, adult day care centers have one main benefit over all senior home care businesses. This benefit is socialization.

When a home care worker arrives, your parent will have someone to talk to, but this is not the same as what he or she would have at a day care center. At adult day cares, seniors are able to take part in activities with workers and with other seniors. This can include:

  • Singing
  • Playing board games and card games
  • Making crafts
  • Going on field trips or outings
  • Cooking
  • Exercise classes

One of the key benefits of adult day care is the socialization it offers to seniors. This can help seniors beat their loneliness and depression, and it can also help keep their brains stronger and healthier. Experts also believe that socialization improves a senior's quality of life.


According to the National Caregivers Library, the average cost of adult day care in 2008 was $64 per day. The average cost per hour for non-medical senior home care services was $20 in 2014. If you compare these costs, it would probably be more expensive to have home care services, but you could also have more freedom and flexibility with the hours of services.

You may also want to look into your parent's health insurance plan to see if it covers either of these services. Medicare will sometimes pay for some or all of senior care services, but not always. You can also ask your parent if he or she has a long-term care insurance policy. These policies may also offer some coverage for these services.

Helping your parent find the best option is important for your parent and for your peace of mind. As you look for the right service at sites like , make sure you look for a company that you trust and that can offer your parent the services that are needed the most.