Timing your Move into Assisted Living

Assisted Living “pep talks” with Janel
male nurse checking senior woman oxygen levels

My best friend’s father just had quadruple bypass surgery. He did not have pain, he did not have a family history, and he did not have a heart attack. What he did have was a preventative cardiac screening. Because they caught the blockage before it caused problems, his life was saved.

Healthcare has been shifting its focus towards preventative measures in medicine; taking initiative with your health before illness or injury happens. Assisted living can work the same way. We need to anticipate our future needs as we age. Most people are physically “ready” to move into an assisted living before they are mentally ready. This means that most people wait until something happens before moving into an assisted living home. Early research into what type of assisted living environment for yourself or your loved one will open up your mind to the idea. This will make the move much easier. Choosing an assisted living home when you or your loved one is unable to safely live at home is a difficult decision. It is one that should not be taken lightly and it will take time to research. I cannot stress this enough: DO NOT wait to do your research. When you or your loved one start forgetting about household things and leave eggs burning on the stove, it is time to start researching even if you are not quite ready to make the move. When a spouse who has done a lot of the household chores passes away, it may be time to start researching. When you visit Mom and she just doesn’t seem the same or has lost weight, it is time to start researching. Do not wait until Dad wanders into the street. Do not wait until you fall and cannot reach a phone so you lay on the floor for hours or days. Call around to assisted living homes, ask questions, tour different places if you are able. Be READY. (Visit www.twohearts.care under the “resources” tab for an assisted living shopping checklist to help guide you with questions and important things to look for when researching assisted living homes). Like healthcare, early research and intervention into different living options for yourself or a loved one can make all the difference in the world.

By: Janel M. Robilotta RN, MSN