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How Caregivers Can Ease the Transition to Assisted Living- Part 2

How Caregivers Can Ease the Transition to Assisted Living- Part 2How Caregivers Can Ease the Transition to Assisted Living- Part 2

In the first part of our blog post entitled “How Caregivers Can Ease the Transition to Assisted Living”, we discussed how this move can make senior citizens feel a bit vulnerable, since they are leaving everything they were familiar with. We looked at ways that nursing home staff could help make the transition a little easier. In part 2, we’ll be exploring what behaviors to expect once the resident has moved in, and how to handle different situations.

A very important thing to remember about senior citizens that are moving into an assisted living facility is that they are experiencing loss. They may have failing health, less income or may have just lost their spouse and cannot care for themselves. They may also feel a loss of control over their own life and a loss of community status. As a result, there are many emotions that they may experience.

Anger. Residents may become angry about their situation. It can be easy for a nursing home staff member to label this person as a trouble-makers, uncooperative, chronic complainer, etc. However the best thing to do in this situation is to find out what exactly is troubling them, and seeing if it’s something that you can help them work through.

Depression. Many new nursing home residents may grieve and feel sadness. You may notice that they are sleeping a lot, or refuse to participate in activities. They might pick at their meals, have insomnia, demonstrate increased dependence, and express feelings of hopelessness.

Denial. Quite often, nursing home residents will try to cope with their situation by choosing to deny that it exists. They may tell everyone that they are going home soon, or refuse to have anything to do with their finances so they don’t really know what their financial situation is.

So what can you, or your staff, do to possibly prevent these behaviors? Put yourself in the resident’s and family’s shoes. Imagine what it would be like for you to enter a nursing home or place a loved one there. Here are just a few tips on how to ease the transition even more.

  • Give the resident and their family your business card and explain how to contact you.
  • Provide assistance to the resident and their family as they “settle in”.
  • Give the resident a chance to adjust to their environment, allowing them to move at their own pace.
  • Understand that it is normal for residents to be sad and cry about being in a nursing home. Encourage them to talk about their feelings instead of saying “it’s not so bad” or telling them to “cheer up”.

At DigniCARE, we’re poised to help your assisted living facility meet the challenges of a changing environment where the goal is to elevate the quality of life for residents. In addition to providing Assisted Living Insurance, our services encompass innovative solutions for nursing homes, independent living facilities, and Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC). To learn more call (855) 883-6306.

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