When we found out that my mom was experiencing signs of dementia, we didn't take the news lightly. We were concerned about her well-being, and I knew that she couldn't keep living on her own. To keep her safe, I decided to enroll her in a nursing home that specialized in mental health care. She was concerned about the change at first, but as soon as she moved in, she only had positive things to say about her new digs. She loved the ability to get in touch with doctors the same day, and she was even able to make a few friends along the way. This blog is all about keeping your parents safe, happy and healthy.
The decision to explore managed care for an elderly parent or loved one is not an easy one. But it is even more difficult to watch someone you love begin to show signs of being unable to handle the tasks and responsibilities required for independent living inside their own home. If you are watching your elderly mother or father decline in physical or cognitive abilities and want to ensure that they will be safe and well-cared for during their remaining years, broaching the subject of assisted living or nursing home care is the logical starting point. Here are some pointers for making this type of conversation both productive and positive.
Use a gradual approach when possible
Helping your elderly parent come to the realization that they need to consider a different living arrangement should never be undertaken quickly, unless there is an immediate need. Instead, adult children should begin having this conversation well before the actual need exists. Doing this will accomplish two necessary goals. One, it will help your parents become accustomed to the idea and two, it will give them some time to discuss the matter with others of their own age who are also facing this same decision. If, however, your loved one has suffered an illness, injury, or is facing the recuperation after a serious surgical procedure, a more immediate approach may be required.
Rely on visuals to bolster the message
Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are only frightening places when they are unfamiliar, so taking steps to introduce this type of care option to your elderly parents is the next step. Good ways to do this include:
When visiting nursing homes and assisted living facilities, be open and honest about why it is important to do so. Afterward, take time to discuss what they liked or any concerns they may have had during each visit. Doing this will help them understand that you want only the best, safest facility for them. In addition, it will help to convince them that modern nursing care options are designed to offer a pleasant home for those who need some type of help or care.
Before beginning to discuss nursing homes and assisted living options with your parents, it can be very helpful for adult children to do some research on their own by visiting potential facilities, like Regina Nursing Center, and speaking with the director or resident care team. These professionals can give you valuable pointers to use when speaking with your parents about their health and care needs in their advanced years.