If your loved one can no longer safely live independently, it may be time to consider a senior living center. These centers provide support and amenities that help seniors with their activities of daily living while still allowing them as much independence as possible.
When you bring up the possibility of moving into a senior living center, however, it's common to encounter resistance. Despite the fact that these centers encourage as much independence as is safe for their residents, moving into one often feels like a form of giving up freedom.
One way to encourage your loved one to move is to try a temporary stay. Temporary stays began as a form of respite care — they were designed for caregivers who needed some time away from the loved one that they're caring for. However, many seniors today use them as a form of trying out senior living with no pressure to make a permanent decision.
Increasing numbers of centers are offering temporary stays, and many who stay temporarily end up becoming full-time residents. If you're trying to convince your loved one to move into a senior living center, here are three reasons why you should start with a temporary stay.
1. Your Loved One Can Experience the Convenience of Senior Living
Until people stay temporarily in a senior living center, they often don't realize how they make life more convenient for their residents. Meals and transportation services are provided to residents, so there's no need for your loved one to cook their own meals or drive themselves. Assistance with bathing, taking medication on time, and transferring into and out of a wheelchair safely are also provided. With a temporary stay, your loved one can realize how the center makes daily activities safer and less strenuous.
2. Your Loved One Can Meet and Mingle with the Residents
Senior living centers will give you a brochure and a tour, but you don't have a good chance to get the know the people in the community until you live there for a period of time. Your loved one can decide if the residents in the center are a good social fit for them, and they may even make some new friends. If your loved one forms social ties with the community over the course of their stay, they'll be much more likely to make the move a permanent one.
3. Your Loved One Can Explore Several Options
Finally, taking advantage of temporary stays at a senior living center gives your loved one a chance to trial several different ones. In some cases, the permanence of moving can be a frightening proposition — what if they don't like living there? If your loved one spends some time living at several different communities, they'll be able to pick the one that suits them best. The permanence of the move becomes less of a problem when your loved one can know that they've made the correct choice.
Overall, a temporary stay is a great way for your loved one to ease the transition into senior living. If your loved one can no longer safely live independently, contact several senior living centers in your area and see which ones offer respite care stays. Your loved one will be able to see what living in the community is like with no pressure to move in on a permanent basis.