How To Prepare Someone Living With Dementia
For Moving Into A Care Home

When the time comes for a loved one living with dementia to move into a care home, it can be a stressful and challenging time for them. Not only that, but you and other members of your family may feel guilty and upset that you are no longer able to provide them with the care they need. This is why, for everyone involved, it is important to properly prepare before your loved one moves into your chosen care home.

In this post, we will let you know how you can best prepare someone living with dementia before they move into a care home, including the day itself, and how you can offer your loved one ongoing support even long after the move.

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How to prepare for the move

After making the difficult decision that it is time for your loved one to move into a care home, you must be open and honest with your loved one as much as you can. If you hold back too much information it can sometimes come as an unwelcome surprise, and a sudden and unexpected change can be upsetting for everyone involved.

Before the move, many care homes will arrange to visit your relative at home to meet them and walk them through what they can expect. During the visit, they will likely invite them to visit the home so that they can take a look around and get used to the surroundings, staff and other residents. This introduction helps to build trust and familiarity, which should always be key considerations. To further help with this, if the care home offers adult day care or a respite care service, these could be utilised so your loved one is already comfortable spending time at the home before they move in.

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What to do on the day of the move 

When the day of the move arrives, there will likely be a lot of high emotions, both from your loved one and yourself. Moving a loved one into a care home is a big moment in your lives, but one you are doing for all the right reasons, no matter how hard it might be.

You know your loved one better than anyone, so try to pre-empt anything that may cause anxiety, upset or conflict before it happens. At the same time, it is important to be honest about what is happening but do so with a soft and understanding approach.

Familiarity remains key, so do what you can to keep things consistent. Ask staff who have met your loved one to be there to greet them, and encourage them to speak to existing residents they may have already met during previous visits. During this time, make their room as welcoming as possible by using some of their own furniture, photographs and ornaments.

When the time comes for you to leave, it may get difficult, but this will be easier if your loved one has received day care or respite care in the past. Leaving when they are engaged in an activity, talking with staff or eating can make it a less emotional time for everyone.

If you do have any concerns, care home staff will always be available to answer your questions.

How to support the person living with dementia following the move

Following the move, it can be a challenge knowing how to settle a person living with dementia into a care home when you are no longer around them all the time. Some may settle quickly, while it might take others a little longer.

You may want to visit regularly to make sure your loved one is settling in, but visiting too soon can disrupt the process. Try to resist the urge to visit within the first week or two to give them plenty of time to adjust. As hard as it can be, if you visit too soon they may think you have come to take them away. This can make things difficult when the time comes for you to leave. This does all depend on your loved one, however, so speak to care home staff if you are not sure.

For your peace of mind, here at Ashberry Care Homes, we use Care Control systems, which allow you to view up-to-date information on the care your loved one receives. This will help you with the adjustment just as much as it helps your loved one receive fantastic care.

Our approach to dementia care

Our dedicated healthcare providers are experienced in providing dementia care, so we understand there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to caring for those living with dementia. We listen to the needs of our residents, ensuring personalised, one-on-one care is given so they retain their dignity and independence at all times.

Read about how we care for our residents living with dementia for more information.

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Funding opportunities and further support

We predominantly offer affordable but dedicated care for privately funded residents. However, if you have assets less than £23,250 (as of 2023) you may be eligible to receive additional support.

For more information, speak to your local adult social care and referral team or read our guide on how people living with dementia can pay care home fees.

Book a visit

If your loved one would benefit from experienced dementia care, we have several specialist care homes across the UK. View our locations to find your nearest Ashberry Healthcare care home.

Enquire today

For more information and to enquire about taking steps towards providing care for your loved one, get in touch with our team today.

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