10 Tips for Transitioning to Skilled Nursing Facilities

It’s one of the most difficult transitions you and your loved one will undertake—moving into a skilled nursing facility. Whether your loved one is planning to be there temporarily or for a longer, more extended period of time, the process will be challenging both emotionally and physically.

At Brunswick Cove, we understand the importance of this transition and we know that it is rarely easy. Therefore, we’ve compiled these 10 tips to help you as your loved one transitions into a skilled nursing facility.

10 Tips for Transitioning to Skilled Nursing Care

1. Have an Idea of What to Expect

As we mentioned, this is likely going to be a very emotional time for you and your loved one, and therefore, it’s important to plan what you will need and take with you on moving day. Create lists for insurance and health care purposes, and be sure to keep track of what your loved one will be allowed to take with them to the skilled nursing facility.

You need to be prepared for some negative comments from your loved one. This is understandable because it is a huge transition. We want to assure you that at Brunswick Cove, we are like an extended family. We invite you to discuss any concerns with us—we believe you’ll soon find that our residents do love calling Brunswick Cove home. We believe that eventually, your loved one will enjoy calling it home too.

This is one reason that we encourage you to bring your loved ones with you on a tour of our facility. We’re happy to schedule one for you, just contact us for more information.

2. Select Decorative Items That Bring Happy Memories

This may be photographs, a quilt or some meaningful souvenir knickknack that brings a recollection of happy times. This will help capture and create the mood from your loved one’s previous home. It’s particularly important to bring items that your loved one has made or collected.  Pictures of children or homemade crafts are also nice touches.

Just be sure that any decorative items do not interfere with providing health care.

3. Have a List of Items to Discuss With the Care Team

Our health care team is there for you to provide the highest level of dedication and service to your loved one. If you have concerns, we want to be of help.

We will discuss your loved one’s care and treatment plan and discuss the outcomes and process with you. This is a perfect time for you to ask us any questions, and we’ll be glad to provide the answers for you.

4. Get to Know the Staff   

We’d love a chance to get to know you! We’ve always felt that our staff members are a critical part of what makes Brunswick Cove different from other skilled nursing facilities in the area. By getting to know us, we’ll be able to clearly communicate any concerns that may arise and provide assurance that your loved one is getting the highest level of care possible.

5. Visit, But Give Your Loved One Courtesy

Remember, he or she does not just have a room, they have a new home. Knock on the door before entering. Call ahead and let them know that you’re visiting. Continue the niceties that you would if your loved one were still living at home. This will not only help them settle into a routine, but it will help their new location start feeling like home.

6. Listen to Your Loved One

Transitions can be scary and upsetting. You will likely be struggling with feelings of guilt and remorse. Your loved one may also be having a hard time letting go of their independence. Listen to them. Understand their feelings and reassure them that they are loved. Also, remind them that they are also loved by the members of our staff.

7. Plan Outings if Possible

Once your loved one has settled into their new surroundings, go ahead and plan outings if they are able. This can be something as simple as a trip to the park or a brief visit at a small shopping center. Try not to schedule huge outings until they have adjusted to the schedule

8. Give Them a Sense of Control

When you have to go into skilled nursing care, there is a sense of loss of control over so many things.  Let them know what choices are available to them in regards to activities and social gatherings. Let them decorate their room and determine what items they’d like to have and where to place them.

9. Help Them Get Connected With Social Activities

Moving to a new place can be challenging, and at first, your loved one may be hesitant to participate in the social activities of the group. Helping facilitate introductions can go a long way toward making your loved one feel welcome.

10. Be Sure to Have Updated Medical Records/Documents in a Safe Place

While we will have a copy of your loved one’s medical records, we do encourage you to maintain your own copy, as well as a copy of the medications your loved one is taking. This helps ensure that you are an active partner in their care and a vital member of our health care team. We want you to speak with us about what goals you have for them.

Brunswick Cove: A Relaxing Home for Those You Love

Any place can offer senior nursing care, but at Brunswick Cove, we’re something more. We’re a family, a community in which your loved one can thrive. From compassionate, dedicated medical care, to a warm and welcoming environment, your loved one will find a sense of peace and well-being from the moment they arrive on our campus.

Want to see why so many of our residents love calling Brunswick Cove home? Contact us to schedule a tour.