There may come a time when you will have to make the decision to move a parent or loved one into a nursing home. This, of course, is a very difficult decision and one that needs to be carefully thought through.
For many people, ill health and even dementia force their families to choose a nursing home, as the care that they need cannot be properly given at home. In these cases, special units such as the Ashton Grange Dementia Home or other similar elderly care facilities may need to be considered so that a loved one gets the proper care that they need.
Once the decision has been made, a loved one needs to come to terms with their new home and start this important readjustment period in their lives. This period, can for many be a very difficult time, as they need to adjust to living in a new environment that will at first seem very different from their homes.
To help a loved through both the move and the actual settling in, there are a number of things that you can do, which will make the entire process that much easier and less stressful.
1. Choosing a Nursing Home
Before you do anything, be sure to do your research and check out a number of nursing homes that are within easy traveling distance from your own home. Once you have made a short list, visit the home to get a feel of the place and talk to some of the people that are staying in the facility. If it’s close to home, a loved one may even know other people of their own age, which could help them during their initial settling in stage. A familiar location also helps them to feel less isolated from their original community.
2. The First Weeks
The first couple of weeks are going to be the most difficult for an elderly relative or parent. During this time, it is important that you visit as much as you can, especially over the first few days. If a care home has restrictions on visits during this period, it may be best to choose another option. These first few days are when a loved one may feel slightly adrift and in need of the company of a familiar person.
3. Frequent Visits
Frequent visits will help with the adjustment period. You can also get to know the carers better which will give you a better understanding of how a relative is coping in their new environment. In many cases, you will even be able to actively get involved in caring discussions, as well as having first hand monitoring of their weekly progress.
4. Participation in Care Planning
It is a good idea to help a loved one participate in their own care planning. This can be simple things such as what time they like to get up in the morning. If an elderly relative has a say in what they need, it can help them to adjust to a care home environment more easily than merely having to follow a general regime.
5. Outside Social Interaction
Most good care homes actively encourage their residents to participate in outside social events. These can be anything from bowling nights to visiting public gardens or parks. You can also help by taking your loved out yourself to visit friends or members of the family. This helps and elderly relative to stay connected with life outside of the home.
6. Help in a Home
If you have the time, you could volunteer to help at a nursing home. As well as being able to see more of your relative, you will be able to get involved in recreational activities such as painting or cooking classes. This can also help other residents that may not have relatives that visit them on a regular basis.
Moving a loved one into a nursing home is a very difficult decision for everyone. However, with the right research and the correct care, the transition can be achieved smoothly and effectively. You can also be rest assured that your decision has meant that a loved one is getting the care and attention that they need.