May 15, 2018 by Comfort Keepers of Montclair and Hasbrouck Heights
There may come a time when your senior loved one experiences a life-altering medical event. A stroke, heart attack, and other events can be life threatening to anyone, especially an older body.
Or, perhaps your senior has a chronic condition that needs consistent attending to. Perhaps they’re no longer able to keep up with their blood sugar and they experience a diabetic emergency every week, or their dementia is getting so bad that they wander and need constant supervision.
Whatever the case may be, you may find yourself transitioning your loved one to a senior living community at some point.
It is a big task, but it’s so important for your senior’s health and wellbeing. Here are some tips for navigating this process to make the transition easier:
Upon preparing to move your senior, be sure to communicate with the current place of living, and the new one. This is especially important if you are moving the person from some sort of facility, such as a skilled nursing facility or hospital, to the senior living community.
Submit a request for a care conference at the old place of living some time before your senior is supposed to move out. This way, the staff can give their professional input on what needs to happen during their discharge and transition into their new living space. It’s crucial to have a firm plan on their medical condition and what will be needed right before, during, and directly after the movie to ensure they’re receiving the care they need through it all.
If you’re moving your senior from home, this process will be easier, as you will directly have access to everything they need/may have forgotten at the home.
Then, relay any information you have to the new place of living. This is to ensure there are no gaps in communication, as sometimes information gets lost when providers are two different facilities transition a patient. You’re there to help bridge and stabilize that gap.
On the day of their move, it is important that either you or someone very familiar to the senior stays with them the entire day. A changing environment can be very scary, especially to someone who is receiving medical care or doesn’t understand what’s going on.
Having a familiar face there through it all to reassure them and hold their hand will be an easy and effective way to reduce their anxiety, as well as make you feel better about the situation.
Don't be afraid to talk to the new staff at your senior’s new living facility. While you don’t want to share your loved one’s deepest and darkest secrets with them, it is helpful to give them a feel for their medical conditions, interests, and so forth.
They can take this information down in the patient notes section of your loved one’s file. Knowing their likes and dislikes especially can help them navigate any bumps in the road that may come along, such as them not eating or taking their medications.
A short time after your loved one has moved, be sure to talk to the old and new facilities to ensure there are no loose ends you need to worry about.
Also be sure to check on your loved one and see if the new community is fulfilling their needs like they said they would. This is a time to nip any problems in the bud and ensure high quality of care is being delivered, and that your senior is happy.
Know that the new facility cannot provide 100% of medical care to your loved one. You will still have to take them to some appointments, help with certain problems that may arise in their care, and of course, visit them as often as you’d like. This will help them adjust better and ensure they’re being fully taken care of.