An individual with dementia goes through a wide range of changes that affect their cognitive abilities, including memory, speech, and socialization skills. When dementia begins to influence their daily activities, it may be a sign that they need professional help.
Although many families attempt to care for their loved ones at home, research has found that assuming a caregiving role can be stressful and burdensome, as caregiving has all the features of a chronic stress experience. You can help your loved one receive the care they deserve by streamlining their transition to memory care with the following tips.
Mentally Prepare Your Loved One
Your loved one needs to be mentally prepared to move into a new space, or they’re likely to feel stressed out when the move happens. The process can be more challenging for individuals with dementia as they may not understand the need to move or may be reluctant.
Involve your loved on the decision-making process and keep them updated. Encourage them to share their thoughts and consider their opinions. For instance, if they are afraid to be alone in the new environment, let them know you will visit as frequently as possible and inform them about the other people they may meet at the residence. You can also give them a cell phone that allows them to contact you when needed, making them feel more comfortable with the move.
Fill Their New Space with Familiar Items
Individuals with dementia thrive on familiarity, which creates a sense of routine. Since dementia affects their ability to plan, initiate, and complete previously loved activities, familiarity in a new environment can help them feel comforted and calm.
Decorating your loved one’s new room with familiar items is a powerful way to make the space comfortable. Incorporate familiar objects, such as photos of their family, favorite blanket, or a coffee mug they love. Including a wide variety of items in their room can help them accept their new home more confidently.
Frequently Communicate with Staff
The staff members at private dementia care homes will spend most of their time with your loved one. So, staying in touch with them is important to learn about your loved one and how they are doing. In addition to receiving frequent updates about your loved one’s well-being, being in touch with the staff enables you to inform them about important things related to your loved one’s health. This involves sharing details about their daily routine, favorite activities, and potential behavioral issues.
Staff members in reputable memory care homes are typically equipped with the right knowledge and tools to help your family thrive in their new environment. Staying in touch with them will give you quick access to information.
Keep in Constant Touch with Your Loved One
Make sure to let your loved one know you will keep in touch with them after they move into their new home. If your loved one feels alone in the new environment, they will likely feel stressed and upset. If regular in-person visits aren’t possible, communicate with your loved one on the phone or through video calls. Communicating with your loved one and letting them know you’re there can help ease their mind.
Change is difficult to deal with at any age, but it is particularly challenging for seniors with dementia. When you take the right steps to help your loved one transition to a memory care home, you can better help them adjust and thrive in the new environment.