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How to Move a Parent with Dementia to Assisted Living

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A young man helping his senior father put luggage inside a car.

If your parent has been diagnosed with dementia, the prospect of moving them to assisted living can be overwhelming at first. While it’s not always easy to make such an important decision for your loved one, it can also be essential if they are in need of extra assistance that cannot be provided at home. 

Researching different memory care communities and talking to professional caregivers can help you find the right fit for your loved one’s needs. Moreover, it is important to have a plan for their moving day, anticipate any emotional challenges, and create a routine that can offer comfort

Ultimately, making this change can provide your parent with more safety and happiness by giving them access to helpful resources, such as 24-hour care from medical professionals in addition to daily social activities.

Research Memory Care Communities

As your loved ones get older, it’s essential to consider the quality of care they receive, particularly when it comes to memory conditions. That’s where memory care communities come in, designed to provide specialized care for individuals who have Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other memory-related conditions. However, selecting the right community can take some time. 

When researching, you should take into account the location of the community—is it near your family? Does it offer a serene environment? Additionally, consider the amenities available. Are there outdoor spaces or gardens to enjoy? What about meal options or housekeeping services? 

Finally, assess the community features. Does the community offer activities and events to promote socialization and cognitive health? Making the right decision for your loved one may seem challenging at first, but taking these aspects into account can significantly ease the process.

Talk to the Professional Caregivers in These Communities

By talking to the professional caregivers at memory care communities, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of the level of care they provide. These dedicated caregivers are trained to anticipate the needs of seniors with memory loss and create personalized care plans designed to promote overall health and well-being. 

Whether your loved one needs help with bathing, dressing, or mealtime assistance, memory care communities can provide a comfortable and supportive environment designed to elevate their quality of life.

Make a Plan for Moving Day

Moving day can be a stressful time for anyone, but it can be challenging when it comes to moving a loved one into a memory care community. It’s essential to have a solid plan in place to create a smooth transition. When considering how to pack, transport, and unpack belongings, it’s crucial to prioritize the most important items and take into account any preferences of your loved one. 

Taking the time to make a plan and communicate it with the community staff can help ease anxiety and make sure that everyone is on the same page. With a little bit of planning and preparation, moving day can be a positive and hopeful step toward a new and fulfilling chapter in your loved one’s life.

Prepare for Emotional Challenges

Moving a parent into an assisted living community can be a difficult and emotional decision. It’s important to anticipate and plan for potential anxiety or resistance from both your parent and yourself. 

Your parent may feel a range of emotions, from fear and sadness to anger and frustration, as they grapple with the idea of leaving their home and routine. Remember to approach the situation with empathy and patience, as this is a significant life change for everyone involved. 

It’s also crucial to take care of your own emotional needs and seek support from professionals or loved ones. By preparing for these emotional challenges, you can help create a smoother transition for your parent to their new home.

Get to Know Their New Home

Adjusting to a new environment can be challenging. To ease the process, it’s vital to help your parent become familiar with their new surroundings. Exploring the community together can be a great place to start. Show them where the common areas are and introduce them to staff members.

Encouraging them to join activities can also help them feel more at home. Be bold, ask questions, and voice any concerns. With your support, your parent can feel more confident and comfortable in their new home.

A senior woman in active wear taking an early morning walk as a part of her routine.

Creating a Daily Routine

Establishing a daily routine for your parent can provide a sense of stability and familiarity in their new environment. This routine could include time for meals, physical activities, relaxation, and social interactions. As a caregiver, you play a pivotal role in crafting this personalized care plan. 

Start by identifying the activities your parent enjoys or finds comforting. Do they have a passion for gardening? Then perhaps an hour tending to the community garden could be part of their afternoon routine. Are they fond of reading? Then, some quiet time with their favorite book after lunch might be ideal.

Incorporate regular meals into the schedule as well, ensuring they maintain a balanced diet, which is crucial for their health. Physical activity should also be included in the daily routine; it could be as simple as a morning walk or an exercise class offered by the community.

Remember also to allocate time for them to engage with other residents and staff members – social interaction can greatly improve their emotional well-being. This new routine might take some time to adjust to, but with your help and patience, your parent will find comfort and purpose in their day-to-day life at their new home.

Getting Ready for the Big Move

The decision to move a family member into a memory care community can be a challenging one, but there are ways to make the transition smoother. Once settled in, your loved one will find that these communities are inviting places where they can be involved in activities they enjoy and build meaningful social connections with people they meet right here at Fox Trail in PrincetonBook a tour today to learn more about how we help our residents feel comfortable living in this vibrant community!

Ryan Donahue

Written by Ryan Donahue, Regional Vice President

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