If you have a loved one who has reached a stage in their life where they are struggling to cope with typical daily activities on their own such as cooking and washing, it might be the time to consider getting them the help they need to stay safe and enjoy a good standard of living.
When your loved one needs assisted living you will undoubtedly want to be sure that you do the best you can to find them a place where they will be happy and well looked after, around the clock.
Here is a look at some of the main considerations that should help you find the right assisted living option for your loved one.
You want them to be close by
Location is a key factor when you are searching for an assisted living nursing home and a primary objective is likely to be trying to find somewhere that is in close proximity to where you live so that you can pay regular visits and keep in touch as easily as possible.
Although location is clearly an important factor there are a few potential complications that could influence your final decision.
It should be remembered that the location of the nursing home will make a difference in how they operate, which is because they will have to comply with the laws in that particular area.
You might find that some states are not as generous in terms of how much medical assistance the nursing home can offer.
If your loved one still retains a reasonable level of independence these restrictions should not be that relevant, but if they need a high level of medical intervention, you should check what level of care is available in your preferred area.
By way of comparison, you can often find that huge hotel chains might have all the facilities you need when you stay but it might lack the personal touch due to its size, which is why an independent and smaller hotel might be able to offer a more personalized experience.
The relevance of this analogy is that you could apply the same scenario to a large nursing home that has hundreds of beds, so you might want to decide if you want to go for somewhere that has fewer residents or choose a place that probably has greater resources to provide a high level of amenities.
Finding a place that has a swimming pool and even a theatre room is great, but you might find that it lacks an element of the personal touch because of its size.
This might not be the case and you could find a home that has all the amenities and the staff-to-resident ratio is great too.
The size of the facility can make a difference, which is why it pays to take a good look around and get a feel for the place.
Can you get everything you need for your loved one?
You should find that there is a basic standard that applies across all types of assisted living homes, which includes things like meals and housekeeping services as part of the standard care package.
If your loved one has dementia, for example, you will want to know that in addition to these basic services your loved one can also get a tailored care package that meets their current and future medical requirements.
It is not just about ensuring that your loved one has all the medical care and attention they need to be able to cope with any physical difficulties they have.
Trying to give them a great quality of life so that they are happy and socially engaged is equally important and you should ask what regular programs the facility offers to residents.
A typical setup would include social events, community outings, and complementary therapies that allow your loved one to enjoy peace of mind and contentment in their surroundings.
Ready for the next step
Sadly, it’s a reality that the level of care your loved one needs will probably grow as they get older, especially if they are suffering from a condition such as Alzheimer’s where symptoms will worsen over time
What you don’t really want to do is move your loved one to a new facility when this happens as this would be unsettling and even distressing to them.
If you can find a facility that is able to allow them to transition to a higher care package when it is needed that will allow their care to be continuous within the same facility.
Ask the provider what the options are for continuing care.
One of the most relevant and urgent topics of discussion, when you are seeking out an assisted living care facility, is cost.
You will need to carry out a thorough evaluation of your loved one’s financial situation and talk within the family about the options available based on those circumstances.
There is always the possibility of qualifying for Medicaid and it is clear you will have to get to grips with your financial options at an early stage as this will often be a decisive factor when it comes to choosing a facility once you have identified your options.
Pay a visit
It is imperative that you try and get to experience what the care facility is like to live in before you commit to arranging for your loved one to take up residence.
Do your homework and search out reviews of the nursing home. Arrange a visit and make sure you talk to residents and staff so that you get a firsthand feel of how happy the residents and carers are.
Try to go at a time where you can see how mealtimes work out as this can also be a useful pointer to the quality of the environment.
It is challenging and even a bit stressful when so much is at stake, but if you ask the right questions and do your research, you should be able to find an assisted living nursing home that is just right for your loved one.