As your loved one’s memory deteriorates, you must decide to place them in a new home where they can receive memory, dementia, or Alzheimer’s care. After consulting your family and their healthcare providers, making financial arrangements, and selecting your loved one’s new home, you must prepare for their move to the new home. Use the tips below to help your loved one adjust and to make moving as smooth as possible.
1. Pack for Your Relative
Moving is an emotionally challenging process for anybody, but for a loved one with dementia, it can be highly stressful. Removing photographs and packing away cherished belongings simply adds to anxiety and confusion. It is advisable to pack for your loved one when they are at an appointment, sleeping, or with friends, and it could be beneficial to hire a moving company to pack the belongings to reduce the stress levels of both you and your loved one.
2. Schedule the Relocation at the Optimal Time
Plan their move during the best time of the day. In most care facilities, the early morning hours are busy. Therefore you may want to avoid moving at that time.
If your loved one is at their best in the morning and begins to struggle as the sun sets, plan to start the relocation in the morning or afternoon to prevent unpleasant disruptions.
To avoid misunderstanding, adhere to your loved one’s daily routines, particularly regarding mealtimes, medication administration, and bedtimes.
Make arrangements with the facility to ensure that your loved one has sufficient time to settle in before being presented to their new living area. This allows you time to personalize their room, but more importantly, it will enable your loved one time to eat, meet the staff, and participate in activities. These activities help to foster a feeling of purpose and belonging in their new home.
3. Reassure Them About Their Safety
The desire to return home is one anyone would have if they were in an unfamiliar and undesirable location.
If this is the case with your loved one, you may reassure them verbally and potentially with arm touches or handholding, If appropriate. Inform the individual that they are safe.
It may be beneficial to remind the individual that they are still cared for. They may face difficulties adjusting to the new location and need assurance that they are being cared for.
4. Maintain a Connection That Is Beneficial to You and Your Loved One
Regular communication and visits with your parents demonstrate your continued support and presence. However, communication may be difficult during the initial weeks or months following the move. Your loved one may request to return home, get disoriented, or become unpleasant during visits and phone conversations.
Reduce the distress of persons with dementia when you visit their new home by selecting the appropriate visiting times. If you can, try to visit in the morning and not in the evening. Most people with dementia are more alert in the morning, but sundown syndrome can happen in the late afternoon.
Take loved ones to events and eat with them. Visiting during an activity, game, or lunch can distract from feelings that might be tense. It also makes it clear when the visit is over, which makes it easier to say goodbye.
Moving to a new home can be a trying time for anyone. Apply these tips to ensure that your loved one with memory loss settles in their new home as quickly as possible.