Assisted living arrangements should make your role as a caretaker much less over time, but the first several weeks of assisted living may be a big adjustment for your parent. Here are some ways that you can facilitate the transition to make sure your parent is comfortable and happy.
Help with the Emotional Adjustment
Leaving their adult home can be difficult for an elderly parent. This is why many families help with the emotional adjustment to make sure that the parent has a positive view on their new living arrangement. One thing that can help is to visit the facility many times before the move. Help your parent make some new friends with the staff and other residents so that they are excited to be in their new home. Help them pick out things to take with them from their home so that they can decorate their new home in the same way. These little things can help them to see that the new place will be a good fit.
Helping to Curb Homesickness
No matter how good the new living situation is, a little bit of homesickness is to be expected. You may need to provide some added support during the first few weeks to make them feel less disoriented. For instance, it can be helpful to visit on a daily basis during this time to give them a familiar face to count on. There are small things that may help them to feel more adjusted, such as having some of their favorite meals or hobbies available during this time.
Helping form an Attachment to the Community
It's important that you and the staff help your parent form an attachment to the new home and the community as soon as possible. Spend some effort getting your parent to network and attend different activities that showcase the best of your new facility, for instance, so that they can start to develop a routine and feel that they are fitting in.
Help with Planning Services
It's also good to get your parent used to the different services offered by your assisted living facility. For instance, plan out a schedule that allows them to take advantage of transportation services, game nights, and shared meals.
A little bit of extra care and attention during the first few weeks of assisted living can help you parent to make a permanently positive connection to their new home. These tips can send you both on the way to a great care situation.