How to Start the Conversation About Nursing Home Care With Your Loved One

It can be difficult to bring up the idea of senior care options with your parent or loved one. Unfortunately, the timeline is never the same for everybody. However, there are usually signs that your loved one may be ready for an alternative to living alone.

Senior Living Facilities are ideal when more care is needed after a diagnosis of a chronic health condition, dementia or Alzheimer’s diagnosis, or for seniors who do not have loved ones nearby to assist with daily activities and medication management. The sooner the conversation is had, the more options you will have to devise a plan for your parent or loved one.

Here are some tips to make the conversation less stressful:

  1. Begin Early
    Usually, something drastic has to occur like a fall or a chronic health condition that becomes a “wake-up call” during which you might not make the right decision for your loved one, so getting a head start on the conversation is always best. Your parent might be struggling with household tasks or complaining about loneliness and this might be an opportunity to discuss options. If you are going to broach the subject, it’s better to lead with the benefits rather than the burdens caring for them may pose.
  2. Use the Right Language
    When discussing living options with your parents or loved ones, phrases like “facility” or “nursing home” may cause fear. These places bring to mind the idea of a restrictive living environment. Instead, the word community is inviting and embodies a home where your loved one will have the opportunity to live life to the fullest.Senior Living Communities are vibrant living communities with activities that promote healthy living and socializing. Additionally, they offer onsite nursing support and health-related services.
  3. Visit As Many Communities As Possible
    Starting the conversation early allows you to visit several communities, providing more options. Tours allow you to see what a community is like, how entertained the residents are, what the dining options are like, etc.
  4. Approach the Conversation as a Possibility
    Telling your loved one that you’re moving them to some unknown location without prior knowledge or time to prepare can be scary. Bring up the topic as an opportunity rather than a decision made for them.
  5. Don’t Dismiss What They’ll Miss
    It can be frightening for your loved one to feel like they won’t have the same freedom of access to family. Many times our parents will be worried that they are being removed from the life they know or that they won’t be able to see the ones they love anymore. Ask them why they are worried and find solutions to bridge that gap.
  6. Now is the Time
    The sooner you begin the conversation, the better. It can be made much easier by planning ahead. That way the decision will come as less of a shock. Senior living can be an exciting time for moving into a community with peers who share the same interests, worries, beliefs, and hobbies.

At Castleton Health Care Center, the time it takes residents to adjust is shortened significantly by the activities we offer, the friendships made, and the care we provide!

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