4 Simple Steps to Ease Your Transition Into an Assisted Living Community

Here is the latest addition from Karen Weeks.  Karen writes articles focusing on how seniors can fully enjoy their golden years.  Our thanks to Karen for letting us publish her writings. 

Each year many seniors will make the transition into assisted living communities. If you’re one of them, you may be worried about how to preserve your quality of life in this new home. These helpful tips can come in handy to help you settle in and get back to living your life faster.

Help Yourself Settle in Sooner with Small Touches of Home

If you think you will have some issues settling into your new home, you should know that this anxiety is normal. Many seniors fear that transitioning to assisted living and tend to think that staying in their homes will help protect their quality of life. The opposite can actually be true, however, especially when you need a little extra help with daily activities. Having access to this assistance, as well as other assisted living perks, can lead to a better quality of life than living alone. Still, you need to be proactive in making this new place feel more like home to you. If possible, plan to unpack your belongings as soon as you move in so you can decorate and style up your new apartment or room in your own unique way.

Sign Up for Programs and Activities in Your New Community

One of the main bonuses of living in an assisted living community is the ability to interact with other seniors. These activities (which include outdoor day trips, lectures, clubs, dance lessons and more) are typically included in the overall monthly price of specific assisted living communities. Many cities across the country provide senior and community centers in neighborhoods around the city that promote an engaging lifestyle to the senior community. So, as you settle in, be sure to start taking part in these community activities so you can meet new people and form those all-important social connections. Social isolation is a serious threat to seniors, so being able to make new friends and participate in social activities can be a vital step in preventing mental health issues such as depression. Assisted living communities help seniors live more fulfilling lives by allowing them to have more fulfilling social connections.

Ask Family Members to Help With Your Move to Assisted Living

Sometimes, it isn’t the thought of assisted living that stresses out seniors, but the thought of having to plan a big move alone. If this is the case, think about reaching out to your close family members for assistance with all of your moving tasks. Just being able to talk with loved ones and express your emotions can help relieve some of your anxiety, but it never hurts to have a few extra hands for packing and downsizing. Decluttering and downsizing can be especially difficult when you have so many years worth of belongings. Getting rid of many items can feel like tossing out old memories, so it’s important to have a loved one or friend nearby to keep you objective. You should try to downsize as much as possible, but if there are some items you’re not ready to let go of, you can always put them in temporary storage for now.

Take Advantage of Any Fitness or Health Services in Your Community

Another way seniors can thrive in assisted living is by staying physically active. Regular exercise can help improve your overall mood and mental health. You’re more likely to feel happy and confident when you take action to preserve your physical strength, so don’t let this health habit fall to the wayside. Check with your community to see if they offer any fitness programs or group fitness classes that can help you stay in shape. In addition to providing a good source of exercise, group fitness classes can also provide you with an additional way to socialize as well as motivation to keep up with your health and wellness routines.

These tips can definitely smooth your transition into assisted living. Perhaps the most important step you can take, however, is to maintain a positive outlook on this major life change. Think of all of the ways this new living arrangement will provide freedom and security, and you are more likely to thrive and feel satisfied in your new community.

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