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How to Find Out If an Assisted Living Facility is Suitable for Your Loved One

Finding a good assisted living facility can be difficult if a loved one needs a home due to an accident or an ongoing health condition. However, it’s worth taking the time to learn more about the options available.

Do Your Research

There’s a lot of variation among assisted living facilities, from residences for 10 to 100 people to those specializing in dementia or Alzheimer’s. The National Center for Assisted Living recommends starting your search by asking your loved ones which facilities they’ve visited and their experiences.

You can also ask your healthcare providers for recommendations and consult your local Area Agency on Aging to learn more about what services are available in your area. Once you’ve narrowed your choices to one or more, visiting the facility is important. Dropping by regularly will allow you to spot lapses in care, which can lead to more costly issues down the road. It can also help you get to know the staff and residents better.

Schedule a Tour

Once you’ve researched and whittled down your choices, it’s time to tour facilities. Start by visiting a few on your own before bringing your loved one so they can get to know the place.

During the tour, pay attention to how each facility feels. Some feel intimate and cozy, while others have a more bustling and energetic vibe. It’s important to pick a community that feels like a good fit for your loved one. Most facilities, such as the Westminster assisted living community, offer different activities and care programs for your loved one’s needs.

Ask about the staff-to-resident ratio and what training they have. It’s also important to note the available fitness options; some assisted living communities offer gyms, walking paths, group exercise classes, etc. These can help keep your loved one active and healthy. You should also schedule a mealtime visit to see the food quality and variety.

Ask Questions

During your visit, talk to staffers and other residents. Ask if you or your loved one can stay for meals, activities, and other events to get a feel for the community. Find available services, such as bathing, dressing, and medication management. Ask how teams are trained and what happens when a resident’s needs change. Get answers to logistical questions, but also listen to your gut instinct. You want your loved one to be comfortable and happy in their new home.

Schedule a Visit

A visit from a friend or family member is often appreciated and may help to ease the transition to an assisted living facility. However, it is vital to balance how often you visit based on the health and energy of your loved one. It’s also recommended that you visit with just a few people at a time so your loved one doesn’t feel overwhelmed. When most residents have the most energy, try to visit in the morning or right after a meal. You can even bring them a special treat or gift like an old photograph or recipe card.