Reasons to Make the Move to Assisted Living Before the Holidays
Opportunities to Socialize and Meet Residents & Staff
Assisted living communities are full of opportunities for active seniors to meet new people, especially during the holidays. Senior living staff routinely plan fun activities for residents. Sign up for a class, start a new hobby, try a group fitness class, or enjoy a memorable holiday dinner with new friends.
Holiday Parties and Events
During the holiday season, trips to local holiday events, festive parties, delicious meals, and planned social events are abundant in assisted living communities.
A Festive Atmosphere
The holiday season is magical! There’s nothing like twinkling lights, Christmas songs, and gorgeous décor to get you in the holiday spirit.
Imagine having the opportunity to enjoy beautiful holiday decorations everywhere you look, without the hassle of putting them up yourself, or worse, not being able to enjoy them because you don’t have the time to decorate yourself.
Avoid Social Isolation and Loneliness
The holidays are a special time filled with spending time with family and friends, great food, festive decorations, and gift giving. But for many seniors, the holidays mean a season of isolation and loneliness. According to the National Library of Medicine, 43% of adults in the United States aged 60 feel lonely.
Seniors can have more difficulty meeting with family and friends because of mobility, difficulty driving, and health issues. The holiday season is the perfect time for seniors to beat isolation and loneliness with the various activities, events, and social opportunities offered in assisted living communities.
Get Settled Before the Holiday Rush
Moving into an assisted living community can be emotionally draining. Planning a move to an assisted living community before the holidays will allow you to enjoy the holidays without the stress of a big move. In addition, your Assisted Living Locators senior care advisor has helpful resources that can help facilitate your big move before the holiday rush.
A Perfect Time to Bring in the New Year!
New year! New adventures! New Home! New Friends! The new year is the perfect time to let go of the past, try new things, and get a fresh start.
Moving into assisted living is an adventure. You have an opportunity to enjoy a maintenance-free lifestyle that’s full of new opportunities to start new hobbies, explore new interests, and meet new people.
Avoid the Harsh Winter Weather
Winter can be dangerous, especially for seniors. Snowy roads and icy sidewalks can lead to broken bones and hospital stays. In addition, running errands can prove almost impossible during the harsh winter months.
Assisted living communities offer residents a safe and warm environment during the winter season. Transportation to grocery stores and local shopping areas can be typical services offered in assisted living communities.
Considering a move to an assisted living community but need some help making up your mind? Reach out to your local senior care advisor for help!
Prepare Family Before Holiday Visits With Seniors
As we age, the rate of change from one year to the next can sometimes be dramatic. Since many families only get together a couple of times a year for big holiday celebrations, family members can often see big changes in older adults from year to year. If you are a caregiver, these changes have been gradual, and you’ll want to prepare the rest of the family for what to expect. If you are visiting from out of town, it’s important to remember that change is inevitable, and to make sure you stay focused only on the changes that are significant to your loved one’s health and well-being.
If you are a caregiver, we explain what you might want to share with family ahead of time and share a sample email letter that you can customize to suit your situation.
Let family know what to expect ahead of time
If you’re the caregiver for an elderly loved one, you’re used to managing your older adult’s health needs and daily activities, but many of the things that are now a part of daily life can be unexpected and concerning, but everyone should stay focused on what’s important.
You may want to update family ahead of time about your older adult’s current health condition, explain common behaviors, and suggest ways of interacting that will help your older adult enjoy the family gathering.
Things you may want to share:
- Weight loss or gain is to be expected, but significant is not. Significant changes here should be a point of concern.
- Being in a wheelchair or relying heavily on a walker
- Wearing disposable briefs and dealing with incontinence
- Inability to do things for themselves, like eat or use the restroom
- Unpredictable behavior or cognitive problems potentially caused by Alzheimer’s or dementia
A sample email letter – customize to fit your situation
Tailor your message to fit your older adult’s health conditions and overall behavior.
I’m writing to let you know how things are going with mom. We’re both looking forward to your visit and thought it might be helpful if I explained our current situation before you arrive.
You might notice that mom has changed since you last saw her. Her doctors say she’s getting the correct care and these changes are common in people with advancing memory loss.
Some of the things you might notice are that she’s lost weight and looks more frail. She uses a walker and is sensitive to larger crowds and too much noise. She may get flustered being around people she has not seen in a while. She also has some problems thinking clearly, so her behavior is a little unpredictable and may seem odd to you.
Please understand and don’t feel offended if she doesn’t remember who you are or confuses you with someone else. She appreciates your being with us and so do I. The warm feelings she’ll have after spending time with you is what she’ll remember.
Please treat mom as you would any person. She’s still “herself” inside even if she can’t always express it. She enjoys warm smiles and hugs and will love gentle touches on her shoulder or hands.
This all might seem strange to you, but with your help and support, we can create a holiday memory that we’ll all treasure.
I’ve attached a recent picture so you’ll know how she looks now.
Here are a few helpful resources if you’d like to learn more about mom’s health conditions before your visit.
Note: Please tailor the articles/resources you share to your loved ones specific conditions. Select a few different articles to include in your email. We’ve got plenty to choose from here on our website.
For more information on how to prepare your family and your elderly loved ones for the holidays, please reach out to your local Assisted Living Locators senior care advisor today!
Have your elderly loved one create a gratitude journal. Recognizing gratitude is a wonderful way to take care of yourself. Not every day is going to be easy, particularly as we age. By cultivating a grateful mindset, it can help us realize all the good in our lives and focus on what we have to be thankful for rather than the negatives.
Keeping a gratitude journal is an easy way to channel happiness! Write down a few things you are grateful for each day – it can be as simple as a glowing sunset or as profound as your childhood memories.