Do you have a parent that is preparing to move into an assisted living facility? If so, it can be a very stressful and often sad time for them. Some can see it as an end of an era and feel as though they are losing a bit of their independence. This is when you can step in as a loving and supportive family member, ensuring that any of the stress and doubt they are feeling fades away and is replaced by positivity.
Here’s a look at how you can help your parent feel comfortable in their new assisted living facility.
Book a Tour in Advance
A big part of their stress can often be the fear of the unknown. They have never lived in an assisted living facility, so they don’t know what to expect. A simple and effective way to combat this issue is to book a tour in advance of their move-in date. As you research “assisted living near me”, be sure to check if they offer tours. Tours allow you to explore the facility inside and out, and often you’ll be able to see what a room looks like.
As you walk around the facility and see other residents going about their daily routine and socializing this can quell much of the stress your parent is feeling. It’s also a great opportunity to ask questions, which again will help lower their stress.
Help Them Personalize Their Room
Once they move in, this is a great opportunity to help them personalize their room. Be sure to speak to the facility in advance about what your parent can bring. Each one will have its own rules in terms of personal items. Much of it will also be determined by how much space they have in their room/unit and the furniture that already exists.
Some easy ways you can personalize their room include:
- Comfortable and stylish bedding
- Throw cushions and blankets
- Framed photos of family
- Wall art
- Decorative lamps
- Small décor pieces
Each of these items may not seem like a big deal but once you bring them all into the space, suddenly the look is pulled together and reflects your parent’s personality.
Encourage Them to Socialize with Residents
Whether you’re able to visit often or not, it’s important to also encourage your parent to socialize with the other residents. Look into what the facility offers in terms of recreational activities and point out the ones your parent may enjoy. It may just take a little nudge from you and then they will be on their way to building new friendships.
Make Sure They Have a Phone in Their Room
The final tip is to make sure they’ve got a phone in their room so you can contact them often, especially in those first few days and weeks, making sure they are settling in okay and have everything they need. It also helps them to feel connected to family and not off on their own.
By using this advice, you’ll find it can be a smooth transition for your parent as they move into an assisted living facility.