Everyone wants to live independently, however, this can become more difficult as we begin to age. As we get older, daily tasks become more difficult to carry out and even with the help of a caregiver, it can lead to too many problems and risks. Health and well-being are one of the more at-risk aspects of living independently. Specifically, falls are a common issue that many older people deal with.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, about one in four older people falls each year. This leads to over 800,000 annual hospitalizations that are often caused by head injury or hip fracture. If you or a loved one has dealt with a fall in the recent past, it may be time to look into other living options as falling once double your chances of falling again and if it happens when the rest of the home is empty, it can lead to serious medical problems or even death.
Luckily, there are many assisted living facilities around the country that can help your loved one stay healthy and happy as they age. However, many older individuals can be reluctant to leaving their current living situation for an assisted living facility. It is important to take certain steps and keep a few things in mind when approaching a loved one about this.
Tips for Finding A Living Facility
One of the most important tips for talking with your loved one about moving to a living facility is finding the proper facility. Spending the time to look around and research the options that are available will give you the best information that you need to providing the right environment for your loved one. Discussing the subject with your loved one will be much easier if you are knowledgeable about it and if you have a path forward.
There are a number of aspects you need to consider when it comes to finding the proper assisted living facility. Obviously, cost is one of the most important considerations when it comes to finding a new home for your loved one.
What the living facility can offer your loved one is perhaps the most important thing to look at. The services that are offered can make or break a facility. Some of the main services that assisted living facilities offer includes bathing, medication management, transportation, social interaction and activities, and food services.
Along with these, one of the most important services that a facility can provide for older individuals is memory care. Because Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia are so common, choosing a facility that can provide your loved one with the care that they need for this type of ailment can go a long way toward delaying the progression of the problem and minimizing the impact of the symptoms.
Talking With Your Loved One
This is the hard part. Bringing this subject up will probably not be fun and many older adults will be reluctant and even hostile about moving out and into a group facility. With that said, their safety is the most important thing at this point and if living independently puts their safety at risk, this conversation must be had.
When you talk about this with your loved one, be sure that they know that you are coming from a place of love and care and that you want what is best for them at this point in their life. Again, this will be a sensitive issue and some older adults may take this as criticism of their ability to live independently. Because of the issues that can arise from this type of discussion, there are few things to keep in mind:
- Don’t raise your voice as it will make the discussion more hostile
- Listen to what your loved one has to say
- Bring up some issues that you have noticed such as falls or accidents
- Remind them that you just want to keep them safe
There is a good chance that this will take multiple discussions. Making a big decision like moving, especially into a non-independent facility, is not something that is figured out in a single conversation. Instead, there is a good chance that there will be a series of conversations about the topic in order to persuade or open your loved one’s eyes to the fact that moving will be a safer option and can protect them from some health risks.
It should be noted that the first time you bring up the subject, your loved one may dismiss it immediately. At first, it is best not to press the issue and, instead, elect to bring it up[ again at a later date. Perhaps it is even best to bring up the topic in a small way at first instead of a full-blown discussion.
During this time it is important to conserve the relationship with your loved one as, again, the discussion can turn bad. Step back from the conversation if you need to, but remember, your loved one’s safety should come first.
There will likely come a time when your loved one needs to move on from living independently, this may come after a fall or other accident that led to physical injury. If this is the case, you should speak with your loved one about the possibility of moving them into an assisted living facility. It is important to approach this topic lightly at first and be sure that your loved one knows that you care coming from a place of concern and caring. Overall, your loved one’s health is what is most important.
Landmark Senior Living is an assisted living facility that can provide your loved one with the health care that they need while also giving them access to a number of social events to keep them happy in their new living arrangement. If you are interested in learning more about Landmark Senior Living, please visit our website and schedule a complimentary walkthrough of one of our facilities.