Now, how do most people make the most of whichever direction they chose? How do they get comfortable with the next stage? How do they get with the program, no matter what program that is?
Getting some support through home care means getting used to someone new coming into the house. They are used to this, but it may be new to a senior. After all, someone may be helping with bathing or other really personal stuff. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
Use a recognized provider, generally referred through your provincial agency (ie. your local Community Care Access Centre in Ontario)
Once there’s comfort with a caregiver, ask for the same person to come regularly, recognizing that no one works every day, so there may be few people to get to know
Don’t hesitate to report any behaviour or activity that is uncomfortable
Work together with a caregiver to come up with the best way to approach an activity; let them know preferences and needs
Be flexible; care is always exactly when wanted
Making the move to a retirement residence means this is now home. Make it personal and comfortable, open up to new friendships and explore new activities:
Make the space personal; bring in things that offer happiness, like photographs or favourite mementoes, and display them
Check out the recreational activities and events both inside and outside the residence, and take part in those that are interesting. It’s a way to meet new friends that make all the difference to the experience
Get to know the staff. They are there to meet resident needs and make sure they have everything
Explore the neighbourhood with a friend and check out nearby eateries and shopping
Invite family in; they are free to visit you any time
Long term care is all about well-being and your comfort. Make the most of moving to a long term care home:
Actively participate in creating a care plan; a resident is the most important part of the care team!
Be a part of the Resident Council and be “in the know” on the latest happenings
Get involved in the home’s community and charity events
Bring in a few favourite things – drawings, wedding photos, a favourite blanket
Take advantage of the recreation activities and try something new, like painting or a new exercise
Making any kind of change is hard at first. Remember that life choices are very personal, no matter the style of living. Make the most of it and enjoy the changes made.