You and your loved one will consider numerous details when selecting the best assisted living community for their unique needs. While choosing the right path for your loved one’s future can be challenging, there are many benefits to each type of alternative care offering. If you think an assisted living community would benefit your loved one, the experts here at New Perspective have organized a helpful guide to make the transition easy. Our guide will help you better understand assisted living, how your loved one will prosper in a community, tips to start the conversation about assisted living, and useful questions to ask on a tour.
Assisted Living: 101
Your loved one will have access to personalized care in an assisted living neighborhood that maximizes a sense of community amongst like-minded peers. As your loved one ages, it’s not uncommon for them to need extra help or additional support. Assisted living communities offer this assistance for aging adults and other services to support social engagement and healthy, comfortable living. Here at New Perspective, we offer a variety of amenities for every resident, such as:
- Chef-designed meals
- In-apartment laundry
- On-site physical therapy services
- Dressing and grooming
- Medication management
- Assistance using the bathroom
- Transportation services
Along with these amenities, assisted living communities host regular organized social activities and programs, so your loved one can focus on fun without the extra burden of household chores and daily responsibilities. New Perspective communities have a full-time Life Engagement Manager on staff who coordinates daily enriching activities.
Assessing your loved one’s ability to complete their activities of daily living (ADLs) and instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) can be helpful to determine if an assisted living community would best suit their unique needs.
Your Loved One May Benefit from Assisted Living if…
While there isn’t a perfect time to start the conversation about assisted living, you may be able to pick up on specific areas of your loved one’s life where extra help or assistance could be beneficial. Whether your loved one needs help managing their daily routine, is prone to falls, or wants to eliminate the responsibility of household chores, assisted living communities will allow your loved one to live their retired life to the fullest.
Home Upkeep + Daily Routines
Assisted living communities offer daily housekeeping services and have staff on the clock 24/7, so your loved one will have help managing their daily routines and completing daily tasks. As your loved one ages, it’s not unusual for them to become less interested in cooking, cleaning, or completing home care. If you’ve started noticing household chores piling up or their daily routine becoming interrupted, it may be time to start the conversation about transitioning into an assisted living community. Assisted living communities like New Perspective remove these everyday burdens, so your loved one can spend time doing the activities and hobbies they love, surrounded by like-minded people.
Safety + Well-Being
We help you develop a custom plan for assistance with your loved one’s needs – à la carte style – and make adjustments to the plan as their needs change. Over time, it’s not unusual for your loved one to become more accident prone. Assisted living communities are an excellent environment for your loved one as they’ll have care available at all times should a fall or injury happen. Many aging adults can also experience feelings of loneliness, which can lead to depression or isolation, and assisted living communities combat this by offering opportunities to participate in hobbies, social interactions, and regular activities with a full-time Life Engagement Manager. At New Perspective, your loved one will have access to all of our engaging activities, amenities, and community facilities. Our assisted living communities place your loved one in a neighborhood with like-minded individuals, meaning they can socialize or time alone as preferred.
Most assisted living communities offer personalized care plans for your loved one, so their physical health and mobility can stay top-notch. As we age, health conditions can surface, or additional medications may be needed, which is entirely normal. The staff at assisted living communities are here to help keep your loved one in the best shape possible.
Accompanying your loved one to doctor’s appointments will help you stay aware of any underlying health issues and ensure they’re getting necessary care. Regularly assess your loved one’s mobility and signs of self-neglect like unopened mail or weight loss, as these are easy signs that may mean an assisted living community would be beneficial.
Starting the Conversation
Here at New Perspective, we understand how emotional starting the conversation with your parent or loved one about senior living can be. Whether you’ve started noticing difficulties with home upkeep, overall health, or an interruption of their daily routine, there is no perfect sign for when it’s the right time. However, taking the initiative and discussing the option of an assisted living community early on will give you and your loved one time to think, process, and adjust.
A Simple Step-by-Step Guide
As the child of your aging parent, you’re likely responsible for starting the conversation about moving into an assisted living community. Here are a few tips you can utilize to make your loved one feel comfortable throughout this conversation:
- There’s no perfect timing. Starting the conversation early about transitioning to an assisted living community will help prepare your loved one. You must remind your loved one that you have their best interest and well-being in mind and that the move is a conversation rather than a demand.
- Use the right language. Using terms like “nursing homes” or “assisted living” can make this new transition seem restrictive. It’s recommended to use the word “community” and help your loved one understand that they’ll have the freedom to do the activities they enjoy without the burden of everyday responsibilities.
- Bring family and friends together. It may be helpful to include other family members or close friends in the conversation as different perspectives can be beneficial when introducing the topic.
- Explore what different communities offer. Every assisted living community is different, which is why it’s beneficial to start the conversation early and tour several establishments. Your loved one can choose a community based on activities, dining options, residents, and more.
- Have a possible mindset, not a final. An early conversation shows your loved one that making the transition is a possibility rather than a final decision. Take time to explore all available alternative options, opportunities, and amenities, so your loved one can feel comfortable and confident with the move when the time comes.
- Address their emotions. Every move comes with emotions, especially if you’ve spent decades in a home or neighborhood. It’s not unusual for your loved one to find the transition emotionally taxing, so being open about their concerns and offering the right reassurances is vital.
While starting the conversation about moving into an assisted living community may seem daunting, it’s highly recommended to start the conversation early. Your loved one will feel more comfortable about making a move if they’ve had time to think and adjust to the idea of this new way of life. Moving into senior living doesn’t need to be scary. In fact, you should remind your loved one that this is an exciting time as they’ll no longer have to worry about everyday household chores and will be able to spend more time doing what they love and enjoy surrounded by a community of like-minded peers.
Choosing an Assisted Living Community
After speaking with your loved one about transitioning into an assisted living community, it’s time to start exploring your options. There are many details you and your loved one should consider when making a selection, from organized activities and community facilities to personalized care plans, dining options, and more. At each assisted living community tour, asking thorough questions will help you and your loved one get a full picture of what living there might be like.
10 Questions to Bring on Your Tour
Before attending the tours of assisted living communities you’ve scheduled, it’s recommended to prepare questions so you and your loved one get all the necessary information to make your decision. While touring potential communities can be exciting, you should remember a few essential details. These include showing up early to passively observe the community, talking to residents to hear their thoughts, and reviewing the most recent state survey. Along with these details, we’ve prepared a few helpful questions to bring with you to your tours:
- How are new residents welcomed in your community?
- What trainings are your team members required to complete?
- How many residents live in your community?
- Is your community staffed 24/7? By who?
- What are the offered meal services?
- What activities are provided to residents?
- How do residents influence the environment?
- How are families included?
- How is a resident’s happiness tracked?
- How do you create a sense of community in the assisted living neighborhood?
Planning for the Future Can Start Now
Helping your loved one decide to move into an assisted living community can be life-changing, and it’s never too early to start planning. The assisted living communities at New Perspective offer various exciting amenities, enjoyable activities, and community facilities, so your loved one can enjoy their retired life with no added responsibilities or chores. The team at New Perspective is here to guide you and your loved one through the process, answer any questions, and ensure your loved one is comfortable in their new environment.