Helping Your Parents Plan for Assisted Living

Learn How to Talk to Your Parents About Assisted Living with These 4 Steps

Whenever you think of life’s big moments, it’s hard to find one without Mom and Dad. They’ve been an unwavering source of comfort, inspiration and strength. So when it’s time to talk to your parents about assisted living, you might find yourself overwhelmed with emotions.

You’re not alone. Many adult children face the arduous task of finding a safe place for their parents to age. However, you can make the transition a lot less stressful for everyone by following these 4 steps in planning for assisted living with your parents.

1. Hold a family meeting.

The choice to transition into assisted living is life-changing, which is why it’s essential for your parents and supportive family members to be involved in the process as much as possible. The best way to get the conversation about assisted living started is by holding a family meeting.

Here are some tips on how to hold a family meeting about transitioning your parents to assisted living:

  • Include everyone who will be part of the caregiving team for your parents. This could include family members, close friends, neighbors, their minister, or a paid caregiver.
  • Prepare an agenda to keep communication successful and the group focused on supporting your parents. Be sure to stick to a clear timetable, so you don’t overwhelm those attending the meeting.
  • Choose a comfortable setting to keep tension low and positivity high. Find a location that has adequate seating and few distractions.
  • Make sure everyone is heard. Moving your parents into assisted living can stir up emotions for everyone involved. People are more willing to talk about the situation if they feel they have a safe place to speak.

2. Evaluate their needs.

An in-person visit with their primary care physician is the ideal way to accurately evaluate the needs of your aging parents. Not only will you get a comprehensive evaluation of their functional abilities, you’ll get an assessment of their physical health, too.

In order to provide the right level of care, their doctor will evaluate how well your mom or dad perform Activities of Daily Living, or ADLs . These are activities in which your parents engage on a day-to-day basis, such as:

  • Bathing
  • Eating
  • Dressing
  • Grooming
  • Oral hygiene
  • Climbing stairs
  • Walking
  • Using the toilet

You also need to evaluate how well your parents perform Instrumental Activities of Daily Living, or IADLS. Adults need to perform these activities in order to live a successful, independent life. Evaluating IADLS is also a way to measure what level of care your parents might need when they enter assisted living. Examples include:

  • Cooking
  • Driving or using public transportation
  • Doing housework
  • Keeping track of finances
  • Doing laundry
  • Using the phone and looking up numbers
  • Managing medications

3. Create a sound financial plan for assisted living.

After you’ve determined the level of care your mom or dad might need, it’s time to take a deep look at what your family can afford on a monthly basis. Most families use private funds to pay for assisted living. Your parents may be able to pay for this by combining their  personal savings, Social Security payments, pension payments and retirement accounts; they may also be willing to sell their home. In some cases, adult children may contribute some of their own funds to supplement their parents’ resources.

You may be surprised to find out the average cost of assisted living is about the same as the cost of at-home care, which is when you choose to spend retirement in your home. However, aging in place comes with a big caveat: major home renovations.

To live safely at home, your parents will probably need rooms in their home, like the bathroom and kitchen, completely reworked. This could end up costing more money and stress than originally planned.

Talk to your parents about their finances and discuss the difference between aging-in-place and choosing a community that offers assisted living. That way, you can be sure you’re choosing the right path for your parents’ retirement.

4. Delight in exploring the possibilities.

Assisted living communities are not the dreary and sleepy halls you may remember at your grandparents’ “nursing home.” Upscale assisted living offers unsurpassed care, services, and amenities that help your mom and dad thrive through every stage of their retirement.

Housekeeping and laundry services eliminate many daily concerns,  scheduled activities help your parents stay social, and state-of-the-art fitness facilities keep them active. They’ll also have convenient access to life’s little luxuries like a hair salon, restaurant-style dining, and scheduled transportation for fun-filled shopping trips.

While your parents are spending their retirement in style at a luxury community offering assisted living, you can rest easy knowing their health is always in caring hands.

Live Life the Santa Marta Way with Luxury Assisted Living in Olathe, KS

Discover Tuscan-inspired views, top-of-the-line amenities, and world-class cuisine at Santa Marta. Not only will your parents  be able to enjoy the fabulous amenities and services we offer, but they’ll be able to receive  uniquely tailored care as their health needs change.

To schedule a tour or learn more about our assisted living neighborhood and other senior living options, contact us online, and a senior living counselor will get in touch with you as soon as possible.