It is easy to stay up-to-date with your parent or family member’s health when you are their primary caregiver, but how does this change if they transition to a senior living community? Even if you are no longer providing their care full-time, your involvement in their health and wellness plan is still necessary.
Research has shown that family involvement in a loved one’s care can improve both the quality of care that they receive and their quality of life. Socialization and meaningful relationships are crucial for maintaining health and wellness, especially for aging individuals. The benefits of these close relationships include:
- Reduced stress,
- Improved cognitive functioning,
- Reduced risk of depression,
- Less anxiety,
- And greater self-esteem.
When a parent or family member transitions into a senior living community, your relationship with them, and your active involvement in their care shifts. If you were their primary caregiver, you are going from spending every day together to visiting whenever you can (or not be able to visit at all due to COVID-19 restrictions).
This transition may bring up a variety of mixed emotions for both of you. You are excited that your loved one is now in a community atmosphere where they will receive the care that they need, but you may be sad that you will not see them as often or nervous about the future of their health and care. Your parent is excited to form new relationships but is feeling anxious about the move.
These emotions are natural, and the transition into senior living will pose a change to both of your lifestyles. As a senior living provider in Powder Springs, Georgia, Silver Comet Village understands the importance of family relationships and encourages family involvement in their loved one’s care plan. Our goal is to cultivate an environment for residents to lead healthy, active lifestyles and value the role that family connection plays.
The Benefits of Family Involvement
Helps to Ease the Transition into Senior Living
Moving to a senior living community is a new transition for your family, and it may take time to feel completely comfortable with the change. Even though your parent or family member has the opportunity to form new relationships, it is still important that you stay involved and spend quality time with them. By doing so, you can provide a sense of familiarity and comfort during this emotional time.
Better Equipped to Notice Changes in Health
When you are in regular contact with your loved one and the team members at their senior living community, you can observe changes in their health. This involvement enables you to see the development of an ailment or an improvement in their overall health and wellness.
Make Changes to Your Family Member’s Care Plan
If at one point you were your loved one’s primary caregiver, you know their health, habits, and behaviors better than others. When you are actively involved in their care, you can work with the community caregivers to make changes to your family member’s care plan as their condition and needs change.
You Can Maintain a Stronger Personal Relationship
As a family caregiver, it’s not uncommon for individuals to put their role as a caregiver before their role as a daughter/son, spouse, friend, etc. When your loved one transitions to a senior living community, you have the opportunity to stay active in their health and care but can focus your time and energy on maintaining your personal relationship with them.
How You Can Stay Involved
Get to Know the Community Team Members
Make your presence in the senior living community known and form relationships with your loved one’s caregivers. Whenever you are able to visit the community, take the time to get to know the caregivers and other team members in the community. By connecting with the caregivers, you can build trust and understanding, and they will know to keep you informed on your parent or family member’s health and wellness.
Keep in Touch with Your Loved One
Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, families have had to get creative with how they stay in touch with each other. While in-person visits are limited or restricted in some cases, connecting with family members has gone virtual. Make it a point to call your parent or family member regularly. In addition, use video calling platforms such as FaceTime or Zoom to get some face-to-face contact.
“Instead of allowing COVID-19 to be a barrier for us, we will acknowledge what we can’t change and make sure we help residents, families, and staff navigate it in the most positive, least impactful way we can.” – Laura Carey, Navigating COVID-19 as Silver Comet Village Grows
Senior living communities in Powder Springs, Georgia, and across the country have taken extra precautions to keep individuals safe and have found new ways to encourage family involvement. For more information on how Silver Comet Village supports family member involvement in their loved one’s care plan, we invite you to contact our team.
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