Collage Image

Welcome! Integrating seniors into their new community

Posted by TheWorxHub | Monday, December 21, 2015

When introducing new members into your community, you have to realize this is a transition for everyone involved- the senior citizens and their families, as well as your community and staff. The decision to move relatives to an assisted living community often weighs heavily on families, as it's a move that's often met with opposition from the seniors. Naturally, the transition to a new home comes with a host of challenges, but there is quite a bit you can do to make them feel at ease. 

Transitional challenges

First of all, moving to a new home can be an emotional experience for anyone, so imagine what seniors are thinking when they move from a home they've likely lived most of their lives to a smaller place. This is essentially a change in lifestyle; they have to develop new routines, new friends and leave behind old possessions. Parting with all the comforts of home is understandably where the resentment manifests. Families, however, need to understand that this is really just fear of change. 

Assisted living solutions for transition 

That being said, if staff and families work together to create an environment that incorporates the comforts of home, the transition to this new lifestyle can be much easier on everyone.

You can do a couple of things to prepare before the move-in date. First, bring family members to tour the community. Meeting staff and other residents will provide familiar faces to look forward to when they arrive. Situate the room in an aesthetically pleasing arrangement that you know they will enjoy. It might seem like a simple idea, but some just like their things in a particular way. This includes furnishing with favorite pillows, blankets, lamps- whatever might make them feel more at home. Of course, don't forget the wardrobe. Make sure all their favorite articles of clothing - down to their favorite socks - are accounted for.

Surround the room with pictures of loved ones so there are plenty of memories to look back on and share with visitors. Also add personal details like favorite music, games, books or movies that will keep them occupied and help make new friends. Even stock the room with favorite treats and drinks, especially if you think they won't be available in the assisted living center. Familiar objects will help ease into the new environment. Create and share a calendar filled with significant celebrations or events for your family with the staff so they can personalize their new homes even more. 

Collaborating with staff to get them accustomed with the new community member's personal preferences is also essential to a smooth transition. Familiarize them to routine or behaviors so there are no surprises with the staff. Do they have a particular beauty regimen or way of getting ready? Any quirks are good to share in order to help develop personal relationships with those that will be close to them every day. This will not only make your loved ones more comfortable, but will probably give you peace of mind as well.