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What Caregivers Should Know About Assisted Living

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assisted living for caregiversWe all want the best for our loved ones. For many of us, “the best” means caring for our loved ones at home for as long as possible. However, sometimes giving the very best care may mean sharing or relinquishing care duties to others. If you are no longer able to give your loved one the care that they need, it may be time to consider a move to an assisted living facility.

What is an assisted living facility? An assisted living facility provides your loved one with 24/7 on-call care for things like medication management, dressing, bathing, eating, or other activities of daily living. This will ensure that your loved one gets the expert care they need.

Decision-Making Should Be Shared

As with any issue related to their care, your loved one should be involved in the decision-making process about moving to an assisted living facility, if they are able. Talk about the benefits and drawbacks of each choice, and be open and honest in your communications. This decision is bound to feel overwhelming for both of you.

Downsize

You will need to be actively engaged in helping your loved one downsize when they make the shift to an assisted living facility. Seniors will have accumulated decades of treasured keepsakes and belongings, many of which may not fit in their new residence. Take this opportunity to find good homes for outsized furniture and get your loved one to concentrate on the items that matter most.

Visiting is Encouraged

When your loved one enters an assisted living facility, you will still be able to see them as often as you like. Also be sure to ask about whether or not the facility allows for overnight guests during those time when you may want to stay over. Just because your loved one is no longer in your home doesn’t mean that your relationship will be less. In fact, many have found that assisted living care can help relieve stress in both residents and their prior caregivers.

Communicate Often

After the move, be sure to get to know the facility’s staff, including medical staff, social workers, nutrition experts, and activity planners, to get a sense of how your loved one is coping. Check in with your loved one regularly to see what’s working and what isn’t, and request an adjustment or change in care as necessary. Staying involved in your loved one’s life will help you both feel more at ease and more comfortable with the new residence.

 

Written by Bethany Lutheran Village

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