What To Look For In a Nursing Home
Researching possible nursing home facilities for your senior loved one can start with reviewing websites like Living Senior. This is definitely a site to bookmark thanks to the abundant and updated information provided here. After gathering facts and reading reviews about a facility, you’ll want to set up a tour. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your nursing home visit.
Speak to the Residents
The nursing home administration will paint a positive picture of their facility as they should. Yet, sometimes the real story will be coming from current residents and their own family members. You should be able to break away from the official tour and have a chance to talk to the residents who are able to communicate. This doesn’t mean swooping into their rooms and firing off a bunch of questions. You’ll probably see family members visiting. Approach them first to ask about their impressions and then ask to speak to their loved one. You’ll soon find a very open and inviting community at a nursing home.
Look for the Personalized Touches
There is not getting around the fact that a nursing home often resembles a hospital setting. However, that doesn’t mean the place needs to be “cold” and impersonal. As you tour rooms, make a note of how each resident is allowed to personalize their space. They should have the opportunity to bring in some small pieces of furniture like a favorite chair or bookshelf and they should also be allowed to decorate their space with any photos or keepsakes.
Stay for a Meal
This is a major issue for everyone: what’s the food like? The best way to find that out is to stick around for a meal. Not only will you get to sample the food but you’ll also be given an opportunity to see even more residents as the meals are served up in a communal dining setting. While on the subject of food, you’ll want to ask about any special dietary needs of your loved one and how they will be handled. Are residents allowed to suggest menu items? Would these be taken into serious consideration? Is there just one selection at each meal time or a variety of choices?
Look for the Smiles
It might seem like a cliché but smiling folks are happy folks. You want to see how the staff interacts with the residents. Is there a strong sense of familiarity? Do the residents and staff engage in conversations beyond the matters of care? In other words, are relationships being built here?
If you have a positive experience from your first visit consider coming back again at a different time. Ideally you should get a sense of how the day and night shifts operate. You should feel welcomed at any visit. If not, then perhaps this isn’t the place you should be using for your loved ones.
If you have already experienced a nursing home tour, we’d love to hear about it. What were you first impressions? What surprised you? Your stories can help others who are just starting with this research!