Tips on Discussing Moving a Parent to Assisted Living.
Moving to an assisted living community can bring tremendous peace of mind to the whole family. Learning what your parent’s wishes are and helping him or her communicate those desires to others is the best way to make sure your loved one’s needs are fulfilled.
START BY KNOWING YOUR OPTIONS
Seeking out legal, financial and medical information will uncover the many options available for assisted living. Rely on estate planners who specialize in working with seniors. They can help address the questions you present about living wills, trusts and other estate planning tools. These talks can bring you peace of mind knowing you are taking actions to protect your loved one and ensure they are taken care of in a way they desire.
Taking the time to discuss options with a loved one is important to do before you are faced with a health crisis. You don’t want to have the conversation when you are under stress or rushed into a decision. It’s best to converse when you have a positive attitude.
CHECK WITH YOUR PARENT’S DOCTOR AND MEDICAL CARE PROFESSIONALS
How do know when it’s time to move your parent to assisted living? There are several ways to determine this. Read this blog for information that may help. Check with your loved one’s physician and other health care professionals who may care for him or her. A doctor can show you the options in your area and make sure the seniors’ wishes are documented in an advance directive for medical staff. This is also a good time to consider discussing giving a trusted family member medical power of attorney and getting an advance directive form from your state.
MAKE TIME FOR IMPORTANT CONVERSATIONS
You may find yourself putting off the conversation to move to an assisted living community because of its sensitive, emotional nature. You are not alone. But this dialogue is known to be some of the most important ones you’ll ever have.
It’s critical that you help your loved one make decisions that are right for you both when it comes to a future senior living situation
HOW COMFORTABLE DO YOU FEEL TALKING TO AN ELDERLY RELATIVE ABOUT:
- Their financial situation?
- Their health?
- Their end-of-life wishes?
These aren’t topics that are easily approached. It’s common to think there will always be a better time. In the long run, not having the conversation at all is far more difficult.
How to Help Parents Adjust to the Idea of Assisted Living.
Here are just a few tips to help you as you talk to a loved one:
Take time to write down the topics you want to address with the senior in your life and in what order you want to cover them.
Say it straight. That ensures you’ll be more easily understood.
Because these topics can be emotional, people might not understand exactly what you’re saying.
If you have family members who have trouble with change or don’t want to face the reality that they need more assistance, the conversations can be particularly emotional. Give them some time to think about what you’re saying and return to the topic at another time. But prepare yourself to return to the discussion soon.
Remember, you have your loved one’s best interest at heart. If someone changes their mind, they are definitely entitled to do so, but keep lines of communication open.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW WHEN SECURING ASSISTED LIVING FOR A PARENT?
It’s important for you to learn the location of various forms and documents that will be required as you search for the best living arrangement. Here is just a sample of what will be needed:
- The location of his or her will.
- Long-term care insurance policies.
- The general state of his or her health – and health history.
- The names and phone numbers of doctors, lawyers, financial planners, etc.
- Who has the power to make medical decisions when a loved one can’t? If a medical power of attorney, advance directive or health care proxy is not in place, now’s the time.
- If funeral arrangements have already been made (and paid for), obtain the information. Even if you haven’t in the past, encourage your loved one to be frank and open about expectations.
At Country Gardens, we can guide you through the decision-making process and answer your questions. We’ll discuss care levels with you, including our assisted living care, and work out a plan to meet your loved one’s exact needs.
Why wait for a medical emergency to move? If your loved one moves into assisted living relatively early, they often find it easier to form new friendships, establish routines and engage with everything our community has to offer – and it means if a health or life event does occur, they’re already well placed to receive additional help on a daily basis as needed.