Moving your loved one such as a family member or friend into a nursing home is a decision that many people have difficulty making. The transition from living at home to needing nursing home care tends to be as a result of their mental and physical deterioration. Even though you’re doing your best to ensure your loved one gets the help and support they need, relatives still feel guilty. To make the transition as stress-free as possible, here are 5 useful tips that can help.
When moving a loved one into a nursing home, it’s important that you maintain a positive attitude throughout the experience. Even if your loved one has a different opinion, they will be relying on you for emotional support. While the move can be stressful for both parties, how you conduct yourself throughout the transition period can help put your loved one’s mind at ease. If you begin criticizing and complaining, this will only make matters worse, so remaining upbeat and optimistic can be a huge help.
Make Their Room a Home
If the room that your loved one is moving into has the same aesthetic and comfort appeal as their home, it will be far easier for them to settle in quicker. To make their room a home, try and bring some decorations from their previous address which they will recognize right away. All in all, you need to ensure that the space they’re in is as comfortable as can be. The first couple of days will be tough on both of you, so knowing your loved one feels relaxed can put your mind at ease.
Check in with Staff
If you were providing home care for your loved one, it’s only natural that you will feel hesitant to put them into another pair of hands. As you won’t be able to be there around the clock for your loved one, it can be useful to speak to the nursing home staff to iron out any complaints your loved one may have. Nursing home abuse is, unfortunately, becoming more common, so you can enlist the help of an attorney if you suspect your loved one is being ill-treated by staff.
When your loved one first moves into a nursing home, they may feel as though you have abandoned them, especially if they were receiving home care from yourself and other family members. It’s extremely important that you visit as much as you can to provide reassurance and support to your relative. Showing them that you’re there no matter what can reduce stress levels and give them something to look forward to. If you live far away, make sure to call them regularly to check in and see how they are doing.
Encourage Social Interaction
When your loved one is in a brand-new environment, they may be hesitant to leave their room and socialize, however, the more time they stay cooped up away from other residents, the worse their health can deteriorate. Encouraging your loved one to be more social can boost their spirits and improve their quality of life. If your loved one has dementia, for example, research has shown that social activities can play a valuable role in giving their life meaning and purpose.
While it’s a hard decision to make, knowing your loved one is in safe hands should put your mind at ease. The transition period between moving out of their property and into a nursing home will naturally be daunting and frightening, so make sure that you’re there as much as possible to provide love and support.