Helping Your Loved One Adjust to Senior Living

Making a smooth transition to senior living starts with careful planning. These tips will help your older family member adjust more quickly.

senior couple sitting on a couch smiling at the camera

Helping an older loved one prepare for a move to a senior living community comes with many challenges. It isn’t uncommon for adult children and other family members to feel overwhelmed as they get organized and make decisions. The process can be emotional and stressful.

We have a few tips that may help seniors adjust to and feel happier in their new homes a little faster.

4 Tips for Adjusting to a Move to Assisted Living in a Senior Community

#1: Help the senior get involved before moving day.

Change doesn’t come easily to many people, and seniors may have an especially tough time. Moving during retirement often means the older adult is giving up their home. If they’ve lived there for decades, the transition can be even more difficult.

You can help your older loved one adjust to their new life more quickly by encouraging them to get involved before moving day. Senior living communities can often connect potential residents with events and activities happening on campus. Getting involved will make the community feel more like home when moving day arrives.

#2: Make the new place look like home.

Being in an all-new environment surrounded by unfamiliar people can feel intimidating. Having an apartment that looks and feels familiar can help an older adult settle in more quickly. As you plan for the transition, think about how you can decorate the senior’s new apartment so it resembles home. Incorporating a favorite chair or love seat, family photos, and other treasures is a great start.

#3: Take your time downsizing.

Downsizing a senior’s home can be emotionally and physically exhausting. Unless this move must be done quickly, try to set realistic timelines. Some families find it less stressful for the older adult to move first and then sell their home.

You’ll probably need to have an estate or garage sale, find a charity to donate unneeded items to, and dispose of the rest. That takes time. If it is financially feasible, it may be better to get the senior settled in their new home first.

#4: Accept some days will be better than others.

As is true of any major transition in life, there will be good and bad days. This applies to both you and your senior loved one. If you both accept that, bad days might be easier to manage. As time goes on, the good times will likely outnumber the bad.

Some families find it helps to create a plan for handling bad days. It might be an agreement to call one another or look through a scrapbook or family videos for comfort.

The Wesley Community Welcomes You

If you are searching for a senior living community in the Saratoga Springs, New York area, we invite you to consider The Wesley. We offer a full continuum of care ranging from home care to short-term therapy and Alzheimer’s care. Call us today at (518) 587-3600 to learn more.