Caring for a loved one living with dementia can be a rewarding experience. However, it may eventually become more difficult to provide personalized activities, adequate safety or quality of life as the disease continues to progress.
If a decision for memory support has been made, you may be wondering how best to help your loved one transition from home to a memory care community. At Prairie City Landing’s Harbor Memory Care, we can help.
Successfully Transitioning to Memory Care
To help your loved one make a smooth transition to memory care, there are several steps you can take. Consider these recommendations:
1. Create a familiar atmosphere of home
At Harbor Memory Care, we recommend families prepare a welcoming residence prior to arrival to help a new resident successfully transition to memory care.
Consider what items would likely trigger feelings of belonging and wellbeing that you could bring to the new home – possibly a favorite chair, family photos or a cozy comforter for the bed. Creating an atmosphere of familiarity can greatly contribute to your loved one feeling comfortable in the new space.
2. Reassure your loved one of continued involvement
Transitioning into a memory care community can often cause feelings of insecurity to surface. Your loved one might fear that you will no longer be as involved in daily life. Family members may also struggle and feel as if they are no longer contributing to a loved one’s care and wellbeing.
Reassure your loved one – and yourself if necessary – that your lives together will still be strongly connected. Encourage positivity as there will now be access to personal assistance, activities and programs that can truly support living a high quality of life.
3. Work closely with the memory care director
One of the biggest supporters in this journey is the memory care director. Most families are inexperienced in helping a loved one transition to memory care but the community’s director is highly skilled in navigating the process.
At Harbor Memory Care, our director will assist you with what to bring and what to leave behind, the best time of day to arrive at the community and how to help your loved one settle into the routine. Take advantage of this experience and knowledge to smooth the transition.
4. Encourage visits from family and friends
Depending on the personal preferences of your loved one and how they are adjusting, you may want to encourage other family members and friends to visit and stay in touch. It might be best to work with you on a schedule, however, so your loved one doesn’t feel overwhelmed.
Familiar faces that appear in their new home can help residents make the adjustment and realize that even though they have moved and there may be a different routine, the love and support of friends and family are constant.
5. Let go of your guilt
Many adult children or other family members feel a sense of guilt while their loved one is transitioning into a memory care community. This is often due to feeling inadequate that they weren’t able to continue providing around-the-clock attention.
Your loved one may sense a hesitation on your part which can result in increased anxiety. However, dementia is a progressive disease and requires 24/7 care at a level that most families cannot sustain. At Harbor Memory Care, we encourage our families not to feel guilty about making sure their loved one is receiving the best care possible.
6. Allow time for the transition
It’s natural to become impatient and want to hurry the process along but making a successful transition to memory care takes time. Exactly how long will depend on your loved one.
At Harbor Memory Care, we tell families to plan on at least two weeks to allow for settling into the community and a new routine. If you are concerned that it is taking longer, speak with the staff or memory care director for their assessment and any suggestions.
Discover Life at Tenfold’s Prairie City Landing
We created Prairie City Landing to support our residents to live their best life possible. Our community’s design, residences, activities and amenities are all focused on assisting them to meet their lifestyle and wellness goals.
From the first moment you visit a Tenfold community, we believe you will immediately recognize what makes us different.
Discover the YUSM lifestyle
We believe the highest quality of life is created when our residents are supported to feel YOUTHFUL, stay USEFUL, be SPONTANEOUS and remain MOBILE. You’ll see evidence every day in how our care, services and amenities are all influenced by the strong philosophy we created that we call YUSM.
If you’re considering senior living for yourself or a family member, we’re here to answer any of your questions and we invite you to download our complimentary guide, Just the Facts: Your Guide to Memory Care.
Please contact us if you’d like more information or to schedule a personalized tour.
We hope you’ll visit Prairie City Landing, where you’ll discover we’re a different style of senior living – and it’s all by design.