More than 200,000 seniors participate in adult day care programs each day. These services are essential to the 34.2 million Americans caring for their adult loved ones.

Adult day care provides caregivers a break. It allows them time to work, take care of other responsibilities, and get a much-needed rest.

However, many people have questions about these services. What is adult day care? Continue reading to learn four facts you need to know today.

1. There Are Two Main Types of Care

The term “adult day care” usually refers to special centers. However, there are different types of elder care. Some in-home caregivers also offer daytime babysitting services for seniors who can no longer care for themselves.

There are benefits and downsides to both types of care. Most people find adult day care centers to be preferable because it offers seniors a chance to socialize. There is also likely to be more supervision in a center versus what’s provided in-home.

2. Costs Vary Significantly

The costs of adult day care vary significantly, even within the same city. If you called a few places and thought the quotes were too high, don’t be discouraged. There may be more affordable options available.

Depending on your situation and location, there may also be funding available to help cover the costs of adult day care. Start by searching online for elder care funding in your area. It doesn’t hurt to call your loved one’s health insurance, too, although most companies don’t provide coverage.

3. Centers Are Generally Available During Daytime Hours

Most people are familiar with nursing homes or assisted living facilities. These are always open since the seniors being cared for live there. But, this isn’t the case with adult day care centers.

These centers are generally only available during daytime hours. Most operate only a little longer than an average workday. For example, they may open an hour or two before the standard office starting time and close an hour or two after.

4. Senior Centers Aren’t Adult Day Care

Senior centers aren’t adult day cares. Some people are confused about the difference between these two terms. However, it’s quite simple.

Adult day care centers are meant to care and provide structure for seniors who can no longer do this for themselves. Senior centers are intended to help healthy seniors who can still care for themselves socialize.

Senior centers don’t generally provide care for seniors. Instead, they plan activities that would interest seniors in their area. This may include game nights, potlucks, field trips, dances, and similar events.

More Questions About Adult Day Care?

Millions of seniors participate in adult day care programs. These programs are essential to those who care for them. Although some people have questions about these services, the four facts above can help clarify any misunderstandings.

Do you have more questions about adult day care?

Check out our other stories. You’ll find articles on caregiving, senior health, and related topics to help you learn more on the subject.