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Visiting A Family Member in Assisted Living

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A senior father and son enjoying a conversation while sitting on a couch

Entering an assisted living community can be a significant transition for both older adults and their families. One common question that arises is, “How often should I visit my family member in assisted living?” Striking the right balance between maintaining independence and providing support is crucial.

Some considerations to help you determine the optimal frequency of visits to a family member in assisted living are to understand their individual needs, consider external factors, respect their independence, remain flexible and adapt to their changing life circumstances, and take advantage of technology between in person visits. Set realistic expectations and always value quality over quantity.  

Assisted living is a new step in one’s life, but it is an essential one to ensure that your loved ones live with dignity and comfort. Mattison Crossing at Manalapan Avenue makes it easier for you and your loved one, with ample fulfilling amenities and services.

What Should You Consider When Determining How Often to Visit a Family Member in Assisted Living?

Individual Needs

Each senior’s experience in assisted living is uniquely influenced by factors like health, emotional well-being, and personal preferences. Start by understanding your family member’s specific needs and preferences. Regular communication with the assisted living staff can provide insights into their daily routines and activities, helping you tailor your visits accordingly.

Quality Over Quantity

While consistency is essential, the quality of your visits matters just as much. Instead of fixating on a rigid schedule, focus on making your visits meaningful. Engage in activities your family members enjoy, actively listen to their stories, give them meaningful touches, such as a back massage or holding their hand, and create positive experiences together. This approach can strengthen your bond and contribute to their overall well-being.

Realistic Expectations 

When a loved one initially moves into an assisted living facility, they might get overwhelmed or upset due to the transition and change of routine. It’s essential to set realistic expectations at the beginning as you help your loved one adapt to the new environment. At first, you may need to visit more frequently, but eventually, as your loved one starts to enjoy the community and their new way of life, you may be able to reduce the frequency of your visits.

External Factors

You still have a life of your own, and the external factors of your life, such as the distance between your home and the assisted living facility, your work schedule, and other family commitments, play a role in determining visit frequency. Assessing these factors can help you establish a realistic and sustainable visitation routine that works for everyone.

Respect Independence

One of the primary goals of assisted living is to promote independence while providing necessary support. Striking a balance between offering assistance and respecting your family member’s autonomy is crucial. Regular visits should enhance their sense of connection without undermining their newfound independence.

Adapt to Changing Circumstances

With any transition, there’s no exact formula that will work. Older adults’ needs can evolve over time due to health changes or emotional adjustments. Stay attuned to the shifts and changes of your loved one’s new lifestyle, and be flexible in adapting your visitation frequency accordingly. 

Leverage Technology

A woman talking to her senior mother in an assisted living community over a video call using a tablet

In today’s digital age, technology offers various ways to stay connected even when physical visits are challenging. Video calls, phone calls, texts, or emails can all help you stay connected with your loved one in assisted living if you can’t visit them physically.

Your Loved One’s Health

One of the primary factors to consider when deciding how often to visit a family member in an assisted living facility is their health. The needs of your loved one should determine how often you need to visit them. 

If they can take care of themselves relatively independently, then a visit once or twice a week may be enough. However, if they require constant supervision or are suffering from a medical condition, it may be necessary to visit more frequently.

Social Connectivity

The social connectivity that your loved one has with others in the assisted living facility can be critical to their general well-being and happiness. While visiting them may take some time out of your busy schedule, it’s necessary to plan your visits according to the social events or activities scheduled at the facility. This can help your loved one integrate better into the community and enjoy their time more.

Finding a Visitation Balance in Assisted Living

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how often you should visit a family member in assisted living. The key is to strike a balance that respects their independence, meets their unique needs, and aligns with practical considerations. 

Regular, quality visits contribute to a supportive environment, fostering a sense of connection and well-being for your loved one in assisted living.

Mattison Crossing at Manalapan Avenue is committed to providing quality care for your loved one! Book a visit today to learn more about how we can support your loved one in our assisted living community.

Morgan Berardi

Written by Morgan Berardi

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