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From One Home to the Next: When It’s Time for Assisted Living

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As our loved ones get older, we hope to care for them as long as possible. Whether that’s moving them into our homes or checking in on them frequently, there is a lot caregivers can do. However, it isn’t always enough. 

Certain behaviors are strong indicators your older loved one needs professional, full-time care they can get in an assisted living facility. If you’re not sure, realtor Michelle Thomas offers the following insight to help you determine whether it might be time for assisted living:

Neglecting Basic Care

Senior Matters notes that a sure sign your loved one may need extra help is if they neglect basic forms of self-care. Poor hygiene, missed medications, and an increasingly messy home suggest your loved one isn’t taking good care of themselves. Weight loss is another sign of poor self-care. Your loved one may not be eating enough, or getting the nutrients they need to thrive. Whether this is due to difficulty shopping, cooking, or remembering to eat, an assisted living facility will solve the problem.

You may also discover they’ve neglected financial matters such as paying bills or keeping up on the mortgage. This is usually an indicator that they are developing memory problems. It can also be a sign they’re not financially able to sustain their living situation.

Having Frequent Accidents

As our loved ones get older, they may develop coordination, strength, and memory issues, which can lead to dangerous accidents. American Family Physician explains that tripping and falling are a major cause of injury and even death in older adults. If this kind of accident is happening frequently, it’s a sign they need a safer environment.

Winding Up in Dangerous Situations

If your loved one is developing advancing memory problems, they could put themselves in dangerous situations. For example, they may take a walk and forget how to get home. Or, they may forget they’ve left something on the stove and start a small kitchen fire.

You’re Ready

Finally, one of the simplest and clearest signs it’s time: You’re ready. You only have so much to offer as a caregiver. If you’ve become exhausted or frustrated, your skills will be compromised. It’s okay to admit you’re no longer able or willing to care for your older loved one. Making the call to ensure they get the care they need is the truly compassionate choice.

How to Have the Conversation

If you’ve decided it’s time to move your loved one into assisted living, you’re likely facing a difficult conversation. Beforehand, prepare all of your reasons and a full explanation of why you believe this is the best choice. Gather as much information as you can so you’re prepared if your loved one asks questions.

You may be met with anger, sadness, or confusion. It’s important to be compassionate and understanding about your loved one’s reaction. If they react poorly, that doesn’t mean you’ve made the wrong choice or you have to change your mind. Hear them, help them process the situation, and give them time to digest everything. It may also help to schedule an appointment with a doctor or family therapist to address their concerns fully. 

To help your loved one feel more in control of the situation, present them with a variety of communities to choose from, and offer to help them determine the right choice. There are more than 160 assisted living options in Cape Coral and surrounding cities, and your loved one is bound to find the perfect place to call home. By touring several facilities, your loved one will also be able to see for themselves what life is really like by talking to residents, seeing apartment plans in person and maybe even tasting the food. 

If your loved one has a taste for the finer things, schedule some tours with luxury assisted living communities. In addition to basic features, including medication management, meals, and social activities, luxury centers may offer any number of high-end services. Your loved one may enjoy:

  • Educational opportunities to expand their skills and knowledge base
  • Outings to local attractions, like concerts and sporting events
  • Concierge services for scheduling personal social events and outings
  • Impeccably-landscaped grounds that feature swimming pools, ponds, walking trails, and/or tennis courts
  • Enhanced therapy options, such as water aerobics and massages
  • Pet accommodations

How to Pay for Assisted Living

You can also help ease their minds if you do some preliminary research on how to cover the costs of assisted living. In most cases, the common choice is to sell the family home. If the mortgage is free and clear, your loved one has a good chance of making enough profit to cover the costs of their residence for years to come. You can get an idea of a home’s worth by reaching out to realtor Michelle Thomas and her team, who can also guide you if and when the time comes to sell. 

Remember, the concept of moving into assisted living AND selling the family home will be a lot to swallow, so be patient and sensitive in your approach. Above all, reassure your loved one how much you care, and how much you want to help them. 

Moving a loved one into assisted living is never an easy decision, but for the sake of their health and safety, and to ensure you’re not burning out, it may be the best choice for everyone involved. Be cautious in your approach, and maybe even speak to their doctor before deciding to have the conversation. Whatever you do, continue to offer as much support as you can while helping your loved one feel some control. 

If you or your loved one is in the market to sell, reach out to local expert Michelle Thomas to get a clear picture of the current housing market as well as a property’s worth. Eric can help you every step of the way through this process. Reach out today to find out more! 786.529.5478

Article provided by Bob Shannon

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