As of 2014, the senior population accounted for 14.9% of the US population. By 2060, the number of people ages 65 and up could reach 98.2 million. With the number of seniors continuing to grow, the number of residents in assisted living facilities has, too.
Are you trying to help your loved one transition into assisted living in Washington, DC? Here are six tips that might help.
With these tips, you’ll have peace of mind that your loved one is receiving the care they need. You can ensure their comfort and wellbeing as well.
The transition can feel like a big change, but it doesn’t have to feel like a stressful one. Keep reading to learn how to help your loved one adjust today.
1. Find the Right Fit
First, it’s important to make sure you find the right assisted living facility. Otherwise, your loved one won’t feel comfortable. If they can’t feel comfortable, they likely won’t feel happy, either.
Before choosing a facility, sit down with your loved one. Ask them about what they need. For example, you might want to consider:
- Social services
- Fun activities
- 24-hour supervision
- Health care management
- Wellness and exercise programs
- Housekeeping and laundry
- Medical assistance
Consider your loved one’s daily routine, too. For example, do they get bored easily? Make sure to find a facility that offers mental stimulation.
Does your loved one have limited mobility? Make sure the staff will remain available to help your loved one move around.
Think about your loved one’s health, too. For example, you might need to look for memory care in Washington, DC. Focusing on their distinct needs will help you narrow down your options.
Then, head online to find a few facilities. You can call to request:
- A map of the facility
- A copy of the residents’ rights and rules
- Brochures that list amenities and features
- Floor plans
Make a list of questions you want to ask each facility, too. For example, ask about the training their team receives. Consider the ratio between residents and staff as well.
Complete this research with your loved one. Make them part of the choice.
They’ll likely feel more comfortable with the decision if they have a say.
2. Make Sure It Feels Like Home
Once you’ve chosen an assisted living facility, help your loved one feel at home.
For example, you can help them customize their living space. They’ll likely feel more comfortable if the environment looks a little familiar.
Try bringing decor and wall art from their previous home. Start decorating using momentos from their life. Don’t forget family photos, too.
Try to arrange the furniture and decor in a way that’s similar to the setup in their previous home.
Adding these personal touches can help your loved one transition into their new home.
Before moving in, make sure to contact the facility about packing, moving, and unpacking. Some facilities offer to help you with this process.
Once your loved one moves in, you can help them get acclimated.
3. Help Them Socialize
The first week your loved one is in the assisted living facility is essential. They won’t adjust overnight. However, helping them grow familiar with their new surroundings can make a big difference.
First, help them get acquainted with their neighbors. Go with them to meet the people living next door. They could potentially make a new friend.
Try to encourage your loved one to meet as many new people as possible.
The people they meet could help them grow more comfortable. They’ll have support, even when you’re not there.
While at the facility, take the time to familiarize yourself with the community caregivers and staff, too. The staff will assess your loved one’s needs. With their help, you can create a care plan with your loved one’s needs in mind.
Bring other family members to visit during the first week as well. Everyone can grow more familiar with your loved one’s new surroundings.
Bringing other family members could help them adjust without feeling abandoned.
Try creating a schedule to ensure each family member gets the chance to visit.
4. Get Involved
Take the time to learn more about the social programming the assisted living DC facility offers. These events can help your loved one socialize. Ask the facility if there are any events you can participate in, too.
Try to get more involved with your loved one’s facility. Attending these events can help your loved one transition.
They might discover a few new favorite activities that they’ll start to look forward to.
Encourage your loved one to get involved with a club or group, too. For example, they might consider a gardening or book club.
You can speak with the community social director to learn more about the programs available.
5. Grant Them Independence
Some seniors are concerned about moving into a living facility because they’re worried they’ll lose their independence. Help your loved one find ways to keep their independence.
For example, maybe your loved one loves to cook. Ask if they’ll have access to a kitchen. They’ll feel more comfortable doing something they love.
In the meantime, remain their advocate. They might need your help asking for things, even if they don’t want to admit it.
6. Remain Patient
As you work through this process of moving your loved one into a memory care DC facility, remain patient. Remember, the transition doesn’t happen overnight.
Expect a few setbacks along the way. Your loved one might feel lonely or struggle to make friends. It’s a normal part of the process.
You can help them through it to ensure they’re happy in their new living situation.
Moving into Assisted Living: 6 Tips for Helping a Loved One Transition
Transitioning a loved one into an assisted living facility can feel hard. With these tips, you can make it a little easier for yourself and your loved one. Help your loved one see how much they’ll gain by moving into a facility.
Your loved one’s wellbeing is our priority. We’re here to help.
Schedule a tour to get a taste of the best in senior living today.