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Moving Alzheimer's Patients From Their Homes

- Monday, October 24, 2011

Moving a parent or loved one who has Alzheimer's Disease into an assisted living community is not an easy task.
Moving is difficult for anyone. But, for those with Alzheimer's disease, a changed routine and an unfamiliar environment can be extremely stressful. If you're moving someone with Alzheimer's into an assisted living community, make the transition as comfortable as possible.

Plan First

If possible, talk to them about their future living arrangements while they can still make choices. Explore all of the  Alzheimer's patient's housing options together. It may be harder for you to guess later about what your loved one would want.

If your parent will be moving to a care facility, visit frequently before the move. Speak with the staff about your parent’s background and special needs as well as medical and mental health history, including a detailed medication list.
Make their Space Familiar

Before the move, make your parent’s new home look and feel as familiar as possible. Decorate the area with a treasured quilt, a shelf with special items, a favorite chair or other meaningful possessions. Familiar belongings can trigger feelings of ownership and boost your loved one's sense of security.

Also stock the space with pictures of family and friends, memory books or photo albums. Reminiscing about the past can help a person who has Alzheimer's bring important memories into the present. Label the pictures to help staff members or others identify the people in your loved one's life and encourage conversations about the past.

However, be careful with heirlooms and priceless or irreplaceable items.
Moving day

On moving day, follow your loved one's normal routine as much as possible. If possible, make the move during your loved one's best time of day. whether it's morning or afternoon. While you're moving, do your best to stay positive. Your attitude can help your loved one feel safe and secure in the new environment.

Once your loved one is settled, spend extra time with him or her. Encourage friends and loved ones to visit frequently as well. Extra care and attention can help ease your loved one's transition to the new home or facility.

For questions about Alzheimer’s assisted living communities, and what to look for in a care facility, contact Spring Arbor Living in your area.