Has your elderly loved one displayed signs that they are incapable of being independent and living on their own? Perhaps they recently fell and went to the emergency room and are now back home. As the children of seniors, numerous scenarios raise our antennas, signaling it’s time for assisting living. The problem is that most of us face a dilemma: discussing assisted living with our elderly loved ones is far from easy. Often they are unreceptive to the idea altogether, failing to see it’s in their best interest.
The article below provides helpful tips for talking to your elderly loved ones about assisted living. We hope this makes the conversation a little easier for everyone involved in the decision. At Audubon Care Homes®, we are passionate about caring for seniors and are glad to answer any questions you may have concerning assisted living and memory care. Please contact us today at 504-290-1717 to learn more about our assisted living services in the Greater New Orleans area.
Educate Yourself On Senior Care
Senior care aims to promote health, independence, and quality of life in those who have reached their later years. Unfortunately, most people are not well versed in the different levels of senior care. Before discussing assisted living with your elderly loved one, it is essential to educate yourself on the available senior care options. For starters, you will be able to determine which level of care is most appropriate for your loved one’s situation. You may assume they need assisted living when perhaps they need a higher level of care like skilled nursing, or maybe they would suffice with ongoing home care services. If they do require assisted living, then educating yourself on its nuances will better equip you to answer any questions that arise when you have the conversation with your elderly loved one.
Create a List of Why Senior Living is the Best Option
Did you know that approximately 36 million falls are reported each year among the elderly? These falls equate to about 32,000 deaths and 300,000 hospitalizations for hip fractures, as reported by the CDC. When bringing up the conversation about assisted living with your elderly loved one, it is crucial to prepare yourself and other family members on why it’s the best option to avoid becoming one of these statistics. One beneficial strategy is to perform an activities of daily living assessment before having the conversion. Items in the evaluation include the ability to perform household tasks, toileting, grooming, climbing stairs, etc. If your elderly loved one simply cannot perform many of the activities on the list, then show them the assessment as a motivator for choosing assisted living.
Have a Financial Plan on How to Pay
One of the biggest deterrents stopping seniors from choosing assisted living is the cost. Your elderly loved one might fear how they will pay for assisted living, especially if they are on a fixed income. Cost is a legitimate concern. However, comparing assisted living to 24 hour home care, or even the cost of an ER visit plus post-acute rehabilitation pales in comparison. Be sure to bring up this crucial point when discussing assisted living with your elderly loved one. Additionally, some assisted living providers, such as Audubon Care Homes®, provide roommate arrangements, helping to lower the cost.
Address the Other Benefits of Assisted Living
The greatest motivators are usually intrinsic, so it is vital to determine what motivates a person to help encourage them. You’ve probably already reinforced the point that assisted living is the best care option; however, many other benefits could act as motivators that you should bring up to your elderly loved one. For starters, social isolation is a real and scary phenomenon. In fact, research has linked social isolation and loneliness to various physical and mental health conditions, including higher blood pressure, heart disease, depression, and cognitive decline, as reported by the National Institute on Aging. Assisted living addresses the issue of social isolation because your elderly loved one will be interacting with other residents and caregivers daily. Several other benefits you could bring up include increased health and wellness, memory care, and even delicious meals prepared three times a day. Some assisted living providers, such as Audubon Care Homes®, even include fun activities in their monthly regiment, such as dance therapy, board games, art and crafts, and holiday parties.
Have Several Tours Scheduled
If you plan to have the conversation of assisted living with your elderly loved one, then don’t delay scheduling tours. The reason is that they might agree during the conversation, only to change their mind later. After all, relocation can be terrifying for people of any age, so you don’t want to give them too much time to waver in their decision. With that in mind, be sure to have several assisted living tours scheduled before starting the conversation. The last thing you’d want is to flounder around trying to schedule tours only to have your elderly loved one change their mind and consequently restart the conversation altogether.
Be Patient and Listen
We all find ourselves in situations feeling impatient, frustrated, or angry. There is a likely chance these emotions will arise when discussing assisted living with your elderly loved one. Please remember they feel scared and uncertain, which is natural and should be expected. It’s important to put yourself in their shoes and be empathetic. Exercise patience and practice good listening. More than anything, your elderly loved one wants to be heard, and, deep down, their fears are merely a way of asking for reassurance that things will be alright.
We hope the article above has provided helpful tips on how to bring up the conversation about assisted living to an elderly loved one. The conversation is never easy, but it’s important, and you will do just fine! If you are looking for assisted living in the Greater New Orleans area, please contact Audubon Care Homes® at 504-290-1717. We are family-owned and operated and excited to get to know you.