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Tips for Touring an Assisted Living Community with Your Parent

January 24, 2022

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The decision to move a parent into assisted living is a hard one. Mom or Dad might not want to move from a home they’ve lived in for years. They may feel like you’re asking them to give up their independence. But if they’re no longer able to live safely on their own or need more care than you can provide, assisted living can support their daily needs and help them live more fully.

Signs Your Parent Could Benefit from Assisted Living

Often, aging parents might think they don’t need much assistance and can continue to remain in their homes for at least a few more years. But if they’re having trouble with daily activities such as bathing, getting dressed, using the bathroom or mobility, a move to assisted living can provide the help they need.

Here are 7 signs your loved one may need the help assisted living offers:

  1. Has trouble standing up from a chair or getting in and out of bed
  2. Forgets to take medications or doesn’t do it at the right times
  3. Has become forgetful, perhaps missing important appointments
  4. Has difficulty keeping the home clean and tidy
  5. Has a poor diet, or has noticeably gained or lost weight
  6. Exhibits poor personal hygiene
  7. Has unpaid bills and late payment notices

If you notice several of these behaviors, it’s time to bring up the subject of assisted living. Give your parent time to get used to the idea. Research options in locations that are best for you and your parent. And ask them to go with you as you explore the communities on your list.

Touring Assisted Living Communities: Tips to Keep in Mind

After you and your parent make the decision to start touring assisted living communities, knowing what to look for and asking the right questions can help you find the best new home for your loved one. Use these tips to help you choose a senior living community that fits your needs.

  • Prepare questions beforehand. Touring isn’t the time or place to be shy. Come prepared with questions to ask such as: What is the ratio of staff to residents? Are there private rooms? Are pets allowed? What types of activities are available? How many meals are provided per day? How does the community charge for services? The more knowledge you have, the easier your decision will be.
  • Talk to staff members and residents. In addition to meeting your tour guide, try to talk to as many staff members and residents as possible. They’re the people who will be interacting with your parent on a daily basis. Get their insights into what everyday life is like at the community.
  • Observe how clean/neat the community is. Take note of the overall cleanliness of the community. Is the community aesthetically pleasing? Do you see small touches that make it feel warm and inviting? Ask if there are renovations or expansions taking place in the near future.
  • Eat a meal or take part in a community activity. If possible, join residents for a meal. Are there a variety of options on the menu? Is the food good? Additionally, ask if you can participate in a class or activity. Your loved one’s enjoyment during these times can be an indicator as to how much they’ll enjoy life at the community.
  • Ask about security and safety measures. A major benefit of moving a parent to assisted living is knowing someone will be available to help at any time of day or night. Ask how residents can get help when needed. Are residences equipped with an emergency call system? Are there safety features such as grab bars in bathrooms and low- or no-entry showers?
    Ask if security staff are on duty 24/7.

See if assisted living at Franciscan Ministries is right for you.

Our senior assisted living communities are designed to help residents maintain their independence and well-being. We treat each resident like family and provide the care they need so they’re free to enjoy life. For more information or to schedule a tour, find a Franciscan Ministries community near you. We’d love to show you around!