Aging in place is the dream of every mature adult. Spending their golden years at the home they have grown fond of, surrounded by their favorite furniture and memorable keepsakes. Still, a time may come when they have to give up their residence and move to a smaller, more affordable place, possibly with one floor to avoid the increasing challenge of a staircase. It may even be that they need to change place in favor of a nursing home or assisted living. In any case, going through such a transition is a heavy burden for both the elderly and the family and friends volunteering to help. Some say it’s just as stressful as getting married or having children . The process, therefore, must be handled with utmost care and consideration.
First of all, the planning phase should take place way before the actual move. Don’t leave it until the last moment! Start by decluttering the house, getting rid of useless fodder, broken household items and any old, unwanted junk. The process is a good warm up for the aging resident, so they can let go of other things easier as well. The next step is to decide which furniture will be transported to the new place.
Estimate how many personal items can be brought along, since it’s likely the new home will be much smaller. Separate the useful stuff from those that only hold emotional value, and decide what – from both piles – really should be kept. There will be mementos that must go: these can be sold, donated to charity or given to other family members as gifts.
Request Professional Help
Facing troubles with packing and sorting or the senior relative is just too stubborn? The answer here is simple: hire a senior move manager. The National Association of Senior Move Managers offers experts all across the country who help families organize key tasks to make the transition as painless as possible. They have experience with downsizing valuables, creating floor plans for the new home, and are also willing to screen moving companies and organize auctions if necessary. However, senior move managers do more than just barking instructions, if the situation calls for it they even provide emotional support for the elderly person, helping them come into terms with the sensitive situation.
Preventing Falls at the New Place
Before the transition can be counted as successful seniors will need to grow into their new environment, which comes with certain difficulties. The new place may feel unfamiliar for them, and the memories of their old home will still live in their mind. This could manifest in situations where they fumble with unfamiliar doorknobs, trip on the end of the unexpected carpet or slip on the floor. The new layout can also disorient them, further increasing the chance of an accident.
Therefore why not make sure the place is extra safe while furnishing it. Install grab bars or shower benches in the bathroom, stick down the carpets so they don’t move, or set up lighting in the corridor. Also, consider subscribing to a medical alert system that features fall detection. Since the elderly relative has already invited changes into their lives, one more won’t make much difference. It will provide peace of mind for the whole family, knowing that no accident goes without a notice.
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