Moving a loved one into an aged care facility can be difficult for you and them. Your loved one may feel like they’re losing their independence or experiencing a hard time adjusting to the new environment. For some, they may reject the whole idea of moving into an aged care home.
To make the process smoother, it’s important that you support and help your loved one as much as you can.
In This Article
6 Tips For Moving Into Aged Care
Here are some ways to help your loved one feel more comfortable before moving into residential aged care and after they relocate.
1. Talk to Your Loved One
Before you transition your parent into aged care, it’s vital to talk to them about why the move is necessary. It will be comforting to highlight various positive aspects of living in an aged care facility such as how it could make their life easier as they age and their mobility and faculties decline.
A visit to the aged care facility together and getting to talk to residents and staff may ease any worries your parent may have.
2. Set Expectations
Continue the conversation about aged care with your loved one and find out what they think living in an aged care facility will be like. Often, they may be harbouring some misconceptions about it, so explain to them what moving into aged care truly is like. Walk them through what a day in a facility might be like and compare it to what their life is like now. This might help them see how aged care can eradicate many of their current struggles without taking away much of what makes them happy.
3. Get to Know The Facilities
You may have done proper research and found your loved one the best facility but don’t wait until moving day to take your loved one there. Make arrangements for them to take a tour of the facility prior to moving in. Let them talk to the staff and ask any questions they may have. It’s important that they learn about the food that will be available, the activities they can participate in, and the visiting hours. A prior visit will make the facility feel more familiar when they move in.
4. Settle In Quickly
Once your loved one moves into their preferred facility, take time to help them settle in. Try as much as possible to make their living quarters in the facility feel like home. It will be much easier for your parent to settle in if their quarters have the same comfort and aesthetic appeal as home.
Introduce them to other residents and staff. Walk with them in the neighbourhood and help them discover places like coffee shops, the local library, pharmacy, post office, and more.
5. Visit Often At The Beginning
The first few weeks after moving into an aged care facility may be difficult. Your loved one may feel lonely and abandoned especially if you or other family members offered them in-home care. Visit them as often as you can to remind them that they still have family and are still loved. Your presence will comfort them and ease the transition. Before long, your parent will get used to their new home and hopefully get busy with events and activities and therefore not so dependent on your visits.
However, be careful not to distract your loved one from settling in with too many visits. Frequent visits may make them too eager that they don’t want to participate in social activities in order to wait for your visit.
6. Plan Activities Outside The Nursing Home
Moving into residential aged care doesn’t mean that your loved one can’t go out anymore. If they’re up to it healthwise, organise day trips and outings to help fight the feeling of abandonment and loss of independence. Taking them to places they enjoy such as the movies, the park, shopping or even visiting family, will help them still feel connected with the outside world and make the facility feel less like a prison.
Dealing with the emotions of moving into aged care can be overwhelming for your loved one and yourself. But with the above tips, the move can be easier for both of you. Your loved one will feel loved and cared for, and you’ll rest easy knowing that you made the best decision.
If you require aged care financial advice when moving a loved one into aged care, please contact us on 1300 944 011 to speak with a specialist.
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