Preparing Your Parent to Move Into a Nursing Home

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Making the decision to move your parent into a nursing home is never easy. It can be a complex and emotional process, but there are ways to make it easier for you and your parents.

There are a number of reasons why you may need to move your parents into a nursing home. Maybe they can no longer take care of themselves, or their health is declining. Whatever the reason, it’s essential to be prepared for this decision.

Two senior citizens talking to a nurse in a hospital garden

What to expect

The physical move can be difficult, but the transition to a nursing home can also be challenging for your parent. They will likely have to adjust to a new routine, new people, and a new environment. It’s essential to be patient during this time and help them adjust as much as possible.

What are the benefits?

Some benefits of moving your parents into a nursing home include:

  • They will be in a safe and secure environment with professional caretakers.
  • They will have access to all the necessary medical care and treatments they need.
  • They will have a social life and be around other people their age.
  • They will have access to activities and programs that interest them.
  • They will feel more comfortable and less stressed in a nursing home setting.
  • You will have peace of mind knowing that your parent is well cared for.
  • It can be a less expensive option than hiring in-home care or paying for a retirement home.

Making the decision easier

There are ways to make the decision to move your parent into a nursing home more manageable. You can talk to other family members or their doctors to get their input. You can also look at different nursing homes and visit them before making a decision. Taking the time to do this research will help you feel more confident in your decision.

Ways to prepare your parent for a nursing home

1. Talk to your parent about the decision and why you think it is necessary. Be honest and open with them, and let them know that you are doing this for their own safety and well-being.

2. Discuss the different options available to your parents, such as assisted living or a nursing home. Help them understand the difference and why you think a nursing home is the best option.

3. Once you have decided on a nursing home, visit it with your parent and let them see the facility and meet the staff. This will help them feel more comfortable with the move.

4. Help your parent pack their belongings and ensure that they only bring items that are essential. This will help them adjust to their new surroundings and avoid feeling overwhelmed.

5. If possible, arrange for your parent to have a private room in the nursing home. This will give them a space of their own to feel comfortable in and make the transition easier.

After they move into the facility

Once your parent has moved into the nursing home, there are a few things you can do to help them adjust. Remember, your obligation does not end in packing their things and driving them to the facility. You need to maintain your relationship and stay in touch with them.

1. Spend time with them and get to know the other residents. This will help your parent feel more comfortable and connected to their new surroundings.

2. Help them adjust to the new routine by accompanying them on their first few days at the nursing home. Show them around, introduce them to the staff, and explain the rules and regulations.

3. Be patient with them during this time and be there for them when they need you. Remember that the transition to a nursing home can be difficult for them and they may need your support more than ever.

4. If possible, visit them often and bring them things they enjoy, such as books, magazines, or flowers. This will help make their time in the nursing home more enjoyable.

5. Stay positive and upbeat during your visits, even if you are feeling overwhelmed or stressed. This will help your parent feel more positive about their situation.

6. If there are any problems or concerns, talk to the nursing home staff immediately. Do not hesitate to voice your concerns and ask for help with anything you need.


Moving a parent into a nursing home can be a difficult decision, but with careful planning and preparation, it can be a smooth transition for both you and your parent. By following these tips, you can help them adjust to their new surroundings and make the most of their time in the nursing home.

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