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A Move to Senior Living: How Caregivers Can Ease the Process.


Many older adults recognize the need for a transition to senior living. Still, it’s not an easy

process. In terms of logistics, the emotional adjustment, and finances, there’s a lot to consider.

Fortunately, family members and caregivers can help make the process easier. By recognizing

the signs that it’s time for a move and making your loved one part of the conversation, you can

help reduce stress and make the change a welcome one. Read on for some thoughts from

Sunflower Petals Life/Health Coaching.


Signs Your Loved One Would Benefit from Senior Living

While it’s not the right fit for every senior, there are a handful of signs that suggest your family

member would thrive in senior living. Here are a few indicators that it may be time for a move.

● Your loved one’s health and well-being is a concern.

● A health condition or need for special medical care complicates their ability to live alone.

● They are losing weight or not maintaining healthy eating habits.

● They’re isolated in their current home, or it’s difficult to maintain.

● They often feel lonely or stay home all the time.

● Too much clutter creates fall risks.

● Social connections are lacking, whether due to logistics or friends passing away.

● Your loved one may also express frustration about living alone, which is a sure sign that

it’s time for a change.


Choosing Between Assisted Living, Independent Living, and In-Home Care

When you first discuss senior living with your loved one, they might not realize there are

options. For example, assisted living facilities are different from independent living communities.

Depending on your family member’s needs, one or the other may be a better fit.

For example, independent living communities often have common areas and amenities for

active seniors. Assisted living centers typically have staff on hand to help with personal tasks

and managing medical conditions.


Talking to Your Loved One About Senior Living

Having a conversation—or multiple discussions—about a possible move to senior living is the

best way to ease the transition. Springing the decision on your loved one may hurt their feelings

and make them resistant to change. Here are a few tips for approaching the discussion with

compassion.

● Let your loved one voice their opinion—even if you disagree.

● Don’t make decisions on their behalf. Instead, involve them in the decision making, from

where to move to how to pack. For example, tour a handful of assisted living or skilled

care communities in the area. Seeing everything in person can make a difference.

● Highlight the benefits of the new living situation, such as amenities, availability of social

events, and consistent healthcare support.

● Establish a timeline, one that allows for as stress-free a change as possible. Rushing

things may make your senior feel anxious and disconnected.

● Help them set up a budget and address their finances. Many older adults stress about

finances, so having strategies to share can help ease their mind.

● Offer as many options as possible. Having a say in the matter can help boost your loved

one’s confidence. Even if you guide them in the right direction, if it’s their choice, the

move will be much less stressful for everyone.

As an alternative, consider hiring a home care agency that can come into your senior loved

one’s home and offer skilled and compassionate care. This option allows them to age in place

and reside in their home for longer.


More Resources to Help You Navigate the Transition

Need more guidance on senior living options and considerations? Consult these resources for

help.

How to Help an Aging Parent

Fall Safety: Take Steps to Remain Independent Longer

● How Medicaid Can Help Seniors Cover the Cost of Assisted Living

● Does Long-Term Care Insurance Cover Assisted Living?

● Moving to Assisted Living Checklist: 20 Things to Do

Helping a senior loved one live their best, healthiest life is a worthwhile pursuit. The path toward

ensuring your older family member’s health, safety, and happiness might be a bumpy one. But

with the right resources—and mindset—you can find a solution that will work for everyone.

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