It can be tricky to know how to get Mom or Dad comfortable with living in a retirement community. Though you looked at plenty of senior communities and finally settled on the ideal fit, moving in will take adjusting. Consider these tips to help your loved one adjust to his or her new living situation.

  1. Encourage older adults
    Place some confidence in your loved ones after moving in, Aging Care suggested. They’ll most likely be intimidated and unsure how to act. Inspire them to be social and make friends, noting that there are plenty of seniors their age in the community. Making friends can make an unfamiliar place seem like home. Tell them to ask questions if they’re unsure of something or curious about some of the community’s activities. Most importantly, remind them to be open-minded constantly. At first, they might be nervous and judgmental of others or the environment. Note that this transition is a big change, and with it requires an open mind.
  2. Prepare them
    There are a few ways you can prepare a loved one for transitioning into a retirement community. Help them pack everything they’ll need, Help Guide noted. Go over the community’s rules and the layout of the campus. Note when meal times are and where areas like the bathroom are.
  3. Make it feel like home
    Be sure to bring along items from home to warm the place up. Curtains from the family room, a familiar blanket or just some family photos can make his or her room feel a lot warmer. If they’re feeling lonely, they can look at these items and feel better.
  4. Don’t feel guilty
    Caregivers shouldn’t feel ashamed for putting their loved ones in a retirement community. These communities promote socializing and medical assistance if needed.
  5. Keep in contact with them
    It’s important to keep a regular line of communication between loved ones and caregivers. Constantly get updates on their daily activities and health from them and the assisted living staff. Regularly visit when you can, until you know they’re more comfortable. However, don’t smother them. If they begin to rely on you too much, they won’t reach out to their community or make friends. Give them time to meet new people and become comfortable with the staff.

These are just a few tips to help make your loved ones’ adjustment as smooth as possible. Though it may take time for them to become comfortable in their new environment, these tips will help get them there.