How to Help Your Loved One Transition to Assisted Living

Posted by admin on February 19th, 2018 in Education | No Comments

Are you considering assisted living for your aging parents? For many older adults, making the move to an assisted living community is a stressful transition. Because of this, making the decision can be an emotional one for adult children.

Many people have visions of lonely people in wheelchairs lining the halls of a sterile facility when they begin to think about assisted living. The truth is that modern assisted living communities are nothing like what you may be picturing.

If you and your parents have made this decision together, there are ways that you can help to ease the stress of the transition. Any move can be difficult, but it can be made easier. Here are some tips.

dogwood forest transitioning to assisted living infographic

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1. Continue Routines

One of the most stressful things about moving into an assisted living community is a disruption to routine. Humans love being able to depend on certain actions and activities and don’t like to have their routine altered. If your mother starts every morning with a cup of coffee in her favorite recliner, make sure her recliner goes with her and so does her coffee mug. It’s a small example, but a valid one. Do what you can to keep routines in place.

2. Stay in Touch

Many older adults fear that as soon as they move into an assisted living community, they will lose contact with loved ones. Don’t let this happen. Keep the lines of communication open. You have a busy life and it may be difficult for you to find time every day to call your parents, but you can certainly schedule days and times during the week so that your parents know when you will be speaking next. Encourage friends and family to call, send cards or visit.

3. Send Something Special

Everyone likes receiving care packages. Every now and again, send something that shows your love. A new book, some printed pictures or even a cheerful houseplant can mean the world to someone in an assisted living community. Sending a small gift will show your loved one that you are thinking of them.

4. Take Time to Visit

Visit as often as you can. It’s not unusual for those in an assisted living community to feel lonely in the beginning. Consider that your parent is now surrounded by people they don’t know in what amounts to unfamiliar surroundings. Visit when you can, and encourage other family members to do the same.

5. Keep It Familiar

Your parents may want to drive by their old house. Your dad may want to visit his regular barber. If your parents rely on you for transportation, try to keep things as familiar as possible. Yes, the community may offer services, but if your parents want to visit their old favorites, help them do it.

If you would like more information about assisted living in Decatur, reach out to our friendly team. We are happy to provide you with information and answer any questions you have. Contact us today.