Before your loved one moves into a care home, there are many ways you can prepare them so that they are not shocked, confused or upset on the day itself.
Introduce your relative to the care home
When making such a big move, one of the biggest causes of upset can be the lack of familiarity with their new environment. Take your loved one to the care home to meet staff and the existing residents beforehand so they feel comfortable there before the moving date.
Try to pre-empt any problems
You know your loved one better than care home staff, so try to address any potential problems ahead of time based on what upsets or worries them the most. This can help prevent conflict and anger.
Be open and honest
Sometimes, loved ones will resist the need for them to move into a care home, even though it is to ensure they receive dedicated and experienced care. While honesty may cause some friction, withholding information from your loved one and springing an unwelcome surprise on them is usually met with even more upset.
Talk to care home staff
Before your loved one moves in, speak to the care home team to discuss your worries and concerns with them. They are trained and experienced, so are the best people to help you with the transition.
Put together a checklist
Preparing a moving into a care home checklist will ensure you have everything in place ahead of the move. This includes:
- Clothes, shoes and accessories
- Personal items such as photographs and ornaments
- Furniture (check with care home staff with regards to space in their room)
- Soft furnishings like blankets or cushions
- Books, hobby items and games
Moving day – what you need to know
On the day of the move, make sure your loved one’s belongings are packed to avoid any last-minute stress. If you are stressed, your loved one could also pick up on this.
Ask a member of the care home team who is familiar with your loved one to greet them and yourself at the entrance. You should also encourage your loved one to speak to residents they have spoken to previously to help them feel at ease.
While your loved one settles in, take the opportunity to prepare their bedroom so it is ready for them as soon as they are taken to it. You should also consider leaving the care home when your loved one is socialising with others or enjoying a meal. This can help prevent upset.
Speak to care home staff ahead of time to check that everything is in place to ensure a smooth transition so you can leave when the moment is right.