Decisions surrounding assisted living facilities are not always easy. Men and women may be reluctant to leave their homes while family members may be worried about how their aging loved ones will adjust to life in an assisted living facility. Though modern assisted living facilities cater to residents with an array of needs and interests, the hesitation about whether or not to move into such a facility is understandable.
One of the concerns seniors and their families may have about assisted living facilities is how to remain in touch with loved ones. Thankfully, staying connected is easier than ever before.
That ease of connection has been on full display throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, during which aging men and women have been urged to limit contact with people outside their households in an effort to reduce their risk of contracting the virus. When the pandemic is in the rearview mirror, seniors can continue to employ various strategies to stay connected with their families after moving into an assisted living facility.
It’s understandable that seniors are sometimes hesitant to utilize technology. Having spent much of their lives without smartphones and Zoom calls, it may seem like adjusting to a world where such things are now widely utilized will be incredibly difficult.
However, modern technology is user-friendly, meaning seniors won’t need much, if any, technical expertise or experience to utilize an assortment of devices that can help them stay in touch.
Ask a relative to show you the ropes of a new device or request that staff at the facility teach residents the basics of using devices to stay connected with family. Staff may help set up Zoom calls or help residents learn the ropes of texting.
Make a weekly communication commitment
Work with family members to set up a time each week when you can communicate directly with them. If family lives nearby, this might take the form of a weekly family meal at a loved one’s home. If family lives too far away for routine in-person meals, set up a time each week for a family Zoom call.
Engage your interests
Continue to engage with your interests and fellow hobbyists. If you were an avid reader who loved to discuss and recommend books to your loved ones, then continue to do so after moving into an assisted living facility.
Sports fans who bonded with their loved ones over a shared passion for a favorite team can keep following their team and discussing the latest big game with their friends and family via email, texts or video calls.
Various studies have discovered the positive effects that hobbies can have on long-term physical and mental health. Staying engaged with your passions can keep lines of communication open with friends and family and benefit your overall health.
Keeping the lines of communication with loved ones open can help aging men and women as they transition to life in assisted living facilities. (MC)