I’m Dreading Move-In Day … Moving a Person with Dementia

All of the time and effort put into planning for a move and making a decision on a care setting can be overwhelming at best. Up until this point, you likely have not shared specific details with your loved one and should create a scenario that he or she will be more comfortable with as moving day comes near. But once a decision is made, what does moving day look like? How will you ever get this done with all of the guilt and emotions you are experiencing? It is possible—with a well-thought-out plan.

Your plan for the move should involve members of your support team—your family, friends, church members, movers and the care staff at the assisted living setting you have chosen will all work together to execute your plan. There are many things to consider:

• Who will move and set up the apartment or room?
• Who will keep your loved one busy as the new ‘home’ is being set up?
• Who will be present for the move?

The person with memory impairment should not witness his or her belongings being moved out of the home, as this will cause increased anxiety. Most people will choose to use their own furniture and belongings to furnish the room or apartment. It’s best to create as familiar and home-like of an environment as possible.

Early in the day and early in the week are the best timing for a move. Weekend moves, although more convenient for some, may be more challenging for the care staff. Arriving prior to lunch and having the apartment arranged prior to the arrival will ease anxiety and fear for the person moving and for family as well.

Ask the care community who will be meeting you upon arrival and what the process will look like from their perspective, as well as any advice they have about making the transition goes smoothly. You will often hear it is wise to ‘stay away’ for a short period of time so the staff can get to know your loved one, and vice versa. Each person will transition at his or her own pace, and the same is true for each caregiver. Being a partner in care will pave the way for a successful move.

Article provided by Senior Care Solutions Staff

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