Tips for Moving Loved Ones into Assisted Living
After all the research, tours, and talking with loved ones you are now ready to help them move into the community you all felt was the best fit.
Now the real challenge and worry can come into place for the new resident. They have had many first-time nerves like the first day of kindergarten, wedding day, or bringing their first child home from the hospital. All these first will be no different than the feeling they get when moving into their new home. It can be really tough on your loved one getting to know everyone, not doing or saying something wrong to those new friends, and of course the realization of knowing you are never going back to your old house.
With this in mind, we wanted to share a few suggestions to you that will help your loved one handle this new step into a great community, and what all can be done to help with what they may be feeling.
Help your loved one be fashionable. Showing up in a new outfit or with updated accessories can really help them feel confident and comfortable. Take them out to a local store and work with them to find the new popular color and combination that really fits them and is currently in style. These new items or outfit might just spark a great conversation which breaks the ice and gets them talking about all different things.
Help them find a friend that has common interests as they do. Talking to the community about this can really help and they should be able to guide you in the right direction to match those common interests. Ask that your loved one be able to sit next to that person or persons who they share an interest, hobbies, or whatever it may be to get them talking and enjoying their time together. The more friends they make in a short time will help get them into more activities, which helps them meet even more people which adds to them enjoying their new home.
Don’t let them be in a rush to make a snap judgment on their new home or new friends. It’s not going to be easy for them at first and not everything will be perfect or go the way they want. As with any new situation you need to get comfortable with how things are done, adapt, and let the community get to know them and how they like things done. Encourage your loved one to try new things, explain how they like things done, and find a happy middle when possible. Once they have been in the community for a while and gotten to understand how things work, then you can talk more in-depth about the situation and if it will work out for them in the long run.
Make your loved one’s new home feel like home, and as close to what they are used to as possible. Don’t just move boxes in and leave, help them unpack, and take as many boxes away as possible. You want their apartment to feel as comfortable as it possibly can be and be comfortable that first night when they go to bed. Make sure you have the bed pillows and some of the little things in place to help them sleep better and wake up relaxed. You can also take pictures of their old house and how everything is set up before moving the items, and then set them up the same way as before. They are used to things in certain places, so don’t shake it up for your liking, but set it up as they have always liked it.
Have the first meal with them in their new home. This is probably the most important thing you can do. By doing this you will add a little bit of comfort to their stressful situation, and you can get to know a few of the other residents as well. Definitely ask the community to sit with a few residents and not just go over on your own. By doing this your loved one will be able to get to know a couple of other residents without being thrown in deep to the new community setting. A lot of communities will provide you with some free meal passes, so take advantage of that and in the first month or two make sure you stop in to visit, have a meal with your loved one and meet their new friends while hearing about the exciting things they have been doing.
Hopefully, by doing these tips your loved one will have a successful first few days and months in their new home, and want to stay and make the most of their new house and life!