6 Ways to Tell It’s Time for Your Senior Loved One to Move to Assisted Living
Most older adults aim to remain independent for as long as possible. But at some point, it’s time to ask for help, though your loved one may be resistant to ask for it. If you’re unsure whether it’s time to gently encourage a move to assisted living, consider these signs—and think about sensitive ways to bring up the topic.
Physical Challenges Are Becoming Too Much
As your loved one gets older, it’s probably becoming more difficult for them to get around. This is one sign that moving somewhere with a bit of on-site assistance could be helpful. Keep an eye out for physical difficulties when you’re visiting or talking to your loved one.
They Have a Messier-Than-Usual House
Many older adults hang onto more belongings than their loved ones might deem necessary. But added clutter—and other signs of a messy home—could mean there’s another factor at play.
Being able to clean up after yourself is essential at any age. Older adults whose homes fall into disrepair or have dust and clutter piling up may recognize the need for some physical help.
They’re Prone to Falls
Though you may blame your senior loved one’s frequent accidents on the clutter around their house, a fall can be a sign of ailing health. Falling is one of the biggest risks to older adults’ health, explains Better Health While Aging. If your senior loved one falls multiple times, it’s a serious sign that they need assistance.
An older adult who is prone to falls may also have underlying health conditions. Or, they may simply be feeling weak and require help with getting around and caring for their home and personal needs.
Emotional Needs Aren’t Being Met
Another crucial aspect of your loved one’s life is their level of social and emotional interaction. Even if your family member lives far from you, they may have an interconnected community to rely on for socialization. Look for signs that their needs aren’t being met and consider those an indicator that a move might be best.
Your Loved One Stays Home Often
Staying home a lot could be the sign of an introvert. But if your formerly outgoing loved one now stays home instead of socializing, it might be time for a change. Being isolated at home—whether by necessity or by choice—is a significant health and emotional risk to older adults, Where You Live Matters explains.
Even couples can feel isolated while not necessarily being alone. Fortunately, an active assisted living community could be the solution.
They Have Few Friends or Community
While having family nearby is ideal, older adults don’t rely on adult children or family members alone. In fact, having an active social circle is both healthy and rewarding for seniors of any age. Friendship is actually more important at this point in life, not less.
So while your family may spend plenty of time with Grandma or Grandpa, your senior loved one still needs their own friends and support system. If there’s a lack of friendship or community in their life, an assisted living scenario or even exploring adult day care options may offer more opportunity for connection.
Ready to Have the Tough Conversation?
Finding ways to bring up your concerns to your loved one might be the toughest part of the journey to assisted living. Remember to always listen to your senior’s concerns and put their comfort and happiness at the top of the priority list.
Together, you can have an open and productive conversation about the best steps to take moving forward. Even if they don’t think they need assisted living, exploring the options could help convince them to choose what’s best for their long-term health and well-being.
Here are some additional resources for seniors considering a move to assisted living:
Determine whether aging in place is a possibility.
Consider all (and alternative) senior service options for care and health support.
Broach the topic with your parents about leaving their home.
Take care choosing the right community or facility.
Handle the transition to assisted living carefully.
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Disclaimer: Infomation provided in this post is by our guest author Lydia Chan of alzheimerscaregiver.net. World Wide Health Services and its affiliate company and partners hold no accountability and cannot be held liable for the information provided in this post. Information provided is at the readers will and at the readers risk including any hyperlink resources provided in this post.