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Top Five Secrets to Help the Transition to Assisted Living

December 21, 2018 0):?> in: Senior Housing Uncategorized

Stepping out of a setting you have grown comfortable can be rather difficult. Assisted living comes with several benefits, but it is the initial stage of transition that is challenging for the seniors to get through.

They have a high possibility of developing adjustment disorder of various levels. This can project a number of challenges for the seniors to go through. Embracing the feelings of abandonment, getting frustrated about losing a substantial amount of freedom, adjusting to the new routine, and adapting to the new living situation can be concerning.

Assisted living homes are a great option to ensure the health and safety of the elderly, but the transition to assisted living can be difficult. You can make it easy for the seniors in adjusting to the assisted living facility by following these simple tips.

1. Personalize the Living Space

It can be bothersome to have a new living situation lacking in familiarity. Help ease them into the new space by making it look as similar as possible to their old living conditions.  Decorate the room they way they like it, add throw pillows if it’s allowed, hang up their prized possessions. Help them make it their new home. Photographs, heirlooms, their favorite books and any other sentimental items will help them feel more at ease, even if they notice subconsciously.

2. Encourage Socializing and Participation

Nothing can make a person feel better than being socially active and remaining involved in healthy activities. For older adults, it is important they feel independent and useful.

To help them in adjusting to the assisted living facility, encourage them to interact with other residents. Promote and support new relationships. This will help them get comfortable with their new peers, and reduce the feeling of abandonment.

3. Indulge them in Healthy Activities

Having their mind engaged in some healthy activities can really help in the seniors’ transition to assisted living. The community centers have a variety of activities to help them have a good time. Help your loved one pick out their favorite weekly activities.  Maybe they love planning, so get them a wall calendar so they can have a reminder of the exciting event they’re looking forward to!

4. Have them Visit the Community Before Moving

It’s best to have your loved one visit the living community a few times before they move.  This will help avoid any harsh and abrupt thoughts and feelings. When you’re there, don’t be too pushy, but encourage and cultivate a sense of familiarity to the best of your ability.  Taking this approach will definlaty help ease the transition - at least they will have a chance or two to process the new environment before living there.

5. Give them Independence

Put yourself in their shoes.  Would it be easy for you to give up your independence? Your ability to walk? Make your own decisions? Have safe alone time?  We take these things for granted on the daily. Imagine having to hold hands while walking, needing assistance eating or being overprotected all the time. It’s hard enough for some to ask for help, much less need it all the time.  

So, in order to facilitate the transition to assisted living, older adults need to feel independent.  Any activity promoting independence will help your loved one’s confidence.  Ask the managers what they do to provide independence for their residence.

Adjusting to the assisted living facility can be made easy through these simple yet important ways and help the older adults with the transition. Just be patient, loving and kind.  Put yourself in their shoes and have some compassion for what your family member is going through. That alone will completely alter how they feel about the entire situation.

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