MAIN BLOG > POST: Tips for a Successful Transition to Senior Living

Tips for a Successful Transition to Senior Living

We'll discuss common challenges/fears and how to overcome them to make the transition easier.

In this article:
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    It’s official, you or your loved one are planning to move into a senior community. While one of the biggest decisions your family will make, what comes next will require just as much thought and support: the transition to senior living. Here are some tips to help you ensure it’s successful.

    1. Understand the Emotion

    While moving to senior living may be practical, it’s still a major life transition. There’s likely a mix of emotion – what you’re leaving behind and fear of the unknown, even if you’re looking forward to the many benefits. Some common fears for seniors include: running out of money, loss of independence and being isolated. It’s important to have someone in which to share these fears and concerns as a little empathy can go a long way in providing comfort and peace of mind.

    2. Give Yourself Time

    Or your loved one for that matter. A change this big isn’t something most people can process overnight. That’s why it’s so important to plan ahead rather than waiting until a crisis hits. This gives you time to grieve the change and start to look forward to the new beginnings that senior living offers. The more you or your loved one is involved in planning and implementing the move, the more confidence and ownership is felt in the decision.

    3. Become a Regular

    You don’t have to wait until moving day to familiarize yourself with the senior living community. Sure you did the initial tour, but actually getting to know the community itself, the staff and new neighbors beforehand can help you or your loved one to feel much more comfortable. So visit often to enjoy a meal or even participate in activities. Plus, it’s a great way to get any lingering questions answered.

    4. Focus on the Positives

    There are numerous benefits to positive thinking, including the ability to cope with stress more effectively. Luckily there are plenty of positives to focus on in senior living – that’s why you chose it right? From worry-free living and spacious accommodations to restaurant-style dining and resort-like amenities to all the clubs, classes, outings and events. And don’t forget the peace of mind in having help available 24-hours a day and an environment designed for seniors with just the right amount of support to enhance independence.

    5. Plan Your Space

    Having a plan for the space beforehand can be another way to ease into the transition for your or your loved one. Ask the community for a copy of the floor plan as well as any recommendations and/or restrictions on what you can bring. Then on moving day you can quickly set up the space so it feels like home with photos, keepsakes, personal items and furniture pieces that are comfortable and familiar. And don’t forget to bring clothes, shoes, toiletries, even favorite snacks, books and music.

    6. Make a Buddy

    We all know what it’s like to be the new kid. That’s why senior living communities go above and beyond to help you feel welcome. Most have new resident ambassadors (or some type of buddy system) in which they pair you with a person or persons who share similar interests. These residents have been where you’ve been and can give you the inside scoop while introducing you around. Check with the community about this, if they don’t mention it first!

    Bonus Tip – Be There

    If your loved one is transitioning to senior living, one move you can make is to let them know you’ll still be there for them. Many seniors worry about being left behind so it’s important to make sure they know that’s not the case by pre-planning some visits on the calendar and/or times you’ll call. If you always have lunch once a week – still do that, and encourage other family members and friends to do so as well. This will give your loved one something to look forward to and help them to feel reassured.

    For more information on how to successfully transition to senior living, check out our Family Decision Guide!

    download our family decision guide


    How to Research Your Senior Living Options

    CATEGORIES: , , ,

    When considering joining a senior living community, there’s a lot to learn before making a decision. Even with friends already living in a senior community, it’s important to recognize that everyone’s needs are different, and understanding those needs and the suitable options available, will help steer the decision-making process to the right choice. To begin researching, take a look at the basic senior living options available:


    Home vs. Senior Living: How to Choose


    When choosing between home and a senior living community, a thorough assessment of the current situation can help ease the way. An honest look at needs, help required and finances can go a long way toward making the best decision.

    touring senior living communities

    10 Questions to Ask When Touring Senior Living Communities

    CATEGORIES: , , , ,

    Would you like to tour senior living communities but aren’t sure what you need to know? 12 Oaks Senior Living tells you 10 of the most important questions to ask.


    5 Things to Consider When Choosing a Senior Living Community


    When deciding between senior living communities, the more you know the better. Find out the five things to do to make the right decision.


    Family Conversations: How to Talk to Your Parents about Senior Living Care


    When caring for a parent becomes too much, maybe it’s time to consider a senior living community. If you’re dreading “the talk” with a parent, take heart and check out our blog.


    Senior Living Now and Then: Not Your Grandma’s Rest Home


    Today’s senior living options have almost nothing in common with “homes” of the past. Find out why there’s never been a better time to join a senior living community.


    How to Make Senior Living More Affordable


    Don’t let the rising cost of care and resort-like feel of today’s communities fool you. Senior living can be affordable. Check out how you can make it work for your budget.


    Comparing the Costs of Aging at Home versus Senior Living


    Think your heart and head will always choose aging at home versus senior living? Put them to the test. Let’s compare the costs and value here.


    Comparing Buy-In vs. Rental Senior Living Communities


    Is a buy-in or rental senior living community right for you? Check out the pros and cons of each to help you decide.


    How to Pay for Senior Living


    How do you pay for senior living? Learn about costs, the value and the variety of ways you can stretch your budget as well as your options.




    If you're interested in learning more about 12 Oaks Senior Living, please call 214-871-2155 or click here to schedule a personalized tour.