How to Talk to a Loved One About Needing Nursing Care

It’s near the top of the list for difficult conversations, but when the time comes to have it, there are ways you can try and get it right. It can be an emotional time when a loved one needs care; watching a once independent person struggle to do everyday things is distressing for the individual and their family. However, following these steps will make the whole process a little bit easier. 

When do you bring the conversation up?

It’s ideal to have difficult conversations when both people are feeling calm. You could make cups of tea and mention that you’ve noticed them struggling and how they would feel about exploring options for extra care. Based on their response, you can take it from there. 

It’s always better to have an important conversation like this sooner rather than later; it will give the person time to process and go over their options. Don’t expect them to agree immediately. Make the suggestion and be prepared for multiple discussions. No matter what, try and focus on the positive impact this transition will have on your loved one and the rest of the family. 

Discussing care options 

When it comes to deciding what sort of care your relative needs, there are numerous options to choose from. Whether you select a more independent setting like an assisted living village or a more hands-on care approach like Eureka nursing home, make sure your loved one feels heard and respected in the conversation. Perhaps they feel like they could manage with some support throughout the day, but if they need more help and aren’t receptive to the idea, don’t give up; sometimes, people need time to deal with something difficult for them. Asking for it isn’t always easy. 

Research, research, research

This is a crucial part of the process. You could sit with your loved ones and research together, which would undoubtedly make them feel more involved and independent. Or you could short-list some options that you think meet their needs and present them one at a time. 

Things to consider when researching are:

  • What is the staff-to-patient ratio?
  • How often can you visit?
  • Are there activities to keep your loved one entertained?
  • How much does it cost?
  • Are there easy transport links?
  • The facility’s most recent inspection report 
  • Reviews from residents or families of residents 
  • If you can visit so that you can get a proper feel for the environment 

Listen to the feelings of your loved one

The prospect of giving up your independence can be crushing. No matter how frustrated or stressed you feel, remember that your loved one is experiencing difficult emotions too.

If they aren’t cooperating, try and understand why. Are they scared, stubborn, or is there another issue at play? If you can understand their concerns, you can do plenty of research to put their mind at ease. 

Listen to them share all of their feelings about the situation. They might feel angry that their body doesn’t function how it used to. Put yourself in their shoes – you might realize how out of control you could feel in this situation. 

Fry Electronics Team

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