Complete Guide For Moving to a Nursing Home

Complete Guide For Moving to a Nursing Home

mom and daughter discussing costs of moving mom into nursing home

Deciding to move into a nursing home is a big choice. But it might be the right option. These facilities will offer tailored support for older people, especially if they have a disability. Family members will be able to rest easier knowing their loved ones are being taken care of. To help make moving into a nursing home easier, here are some of the things you should be prepared for.

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Assisted Living vs Nursing Home

Let’s start by clearing up the differences between a nursing home and an assisted living facility. Both are designed to care for older people. But there is a significant difference in the level of care they offer to patients. In most cases, people in an assisted living facility are fairly healthy. Often, staff will be able to help in certain areas, like transporting them to things like doctor’s appointments. But they won’t need a lot of medical attention and have a lot of independence.

On the other hand, nursing homes will have dedicated medical facilities. They are designed to cater to people who have existing medical conditions and need a higher level of care. Some people only stay here for a short period, like when recovering from surgery, before moving back to their assisted living facility. Others will stay in a nursing home for the rest of their lives. If you want to learn more about the distinction between these facilities and find the right one for you, check out this article.

Costs of Living in a Nursing Home

How much does it cost to put someone in a nursing home? This depends on the type of home and the type of care they require. Often, there will be a basic package. This is designed to cover the essentials of living, like meals and medical care.

There will often be extra costs you can include when moving into the nursing home. These are designed to make your time in the nursing home more luxurious. For example, you might want to get a private room.

These nursing home costs can vary depending on where you live. The average cost across the United States is $255 per day for a semi-private room or $290 per day for a private room. This site breaks down these costs by state, for a more specific estimate.

Checklist for Moving Into Assisted Living

If moving to a nursing home or assisted living is the right choice for you there are a few things you will need to take with you. Usually, these homes will have basics, like furniture. This makes the moving process a lot simpler.

You will only need to bring some personal items with you. Sometimes, you will need to bring
electronic items. For example, you might have to take a TV or digital radio. You will also need to take clothes with you. It’s a good idea to make sure that everything has been labeled properly, so it doesn’t get lost during the washing process.

Don’t forget to pack your medications. The nursing home staff will be able to make sure that these are administered correctly and that you get everything at the right time.

Many people also like to take some items to make their lives a little more pleasant. This can include pictures from home or books. In many cases, you will have the autonomy to design the room the way you want it. If you are in a wheelchair, it’s a good idea to take a cushion with you. This will keep you comfortable. More importantly, though, it will protect against pressure sores. This guide to comfortable wheelchair cushions will give you a better idea of how to find a high-quality cushion.

It’s a good idea to walk around the nursing home facility. You’ll know what type of facilities will be provided and what you will have to take with you. If you have any questions, the staff at the nursing home will answer them for you.

Get a Friend to Help You Settle In

Even though you don’t need to take a lot with you, gathering your items can still be a challenge. Because of this, it can help to bring a friend to help you pack. They can also help you set up your room within the nursing home. This will ensure that you are comfortable from your first night within the facility.

Remember, you don’t need to get everything on the first trip. If you are staying in the nursing home for the long term, it can take a few weeks to transport everything you want. Sometimes, you will have things that you no longer need, like furniture. These can be donated or sold.

Telling People You Are Moving Into a Nursing Home

If the move is going to be a long-term move, you’ll need to let people know. For example, the post office will need to redirect your mail. It’s a good idea to tell doctors about the chance in your location, so they can tailor your care requirements. You should also let your friends and family know, so they can come and visit. Most nursing homes will be able to provide a list of people to update.

Transitioning to Life Within a Nursing Home

Moving into a nursing home is one thing. Getting used to living within the facility is another matter. The good news is that many nursing homes have a wide range of activities for you to take part in. For example, there is often a large library of books for them to read. You can bring in an MP3 player to listen to music and podcasts. You can also bring a TV or laptop to watch movies and TV.

Often the nursing home will do everything it can to help you fit in. For example, there might be a buddy system, pairing you up with someone who can show you the ins and outs of the facility.

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Moving to a nursing home can be a daunting process. There are many things to consider. But you should focus on taking it one step at a time. This will make it easier to get used to your new surroundings. If you will be needing help moving into your new home consider hiring movers to make for an easier transition. And if you’re still concerned about how to start downsizing, check out our guide for that too.

Headshot of Ashlyn Cook, UniMovers' Community Outreach Manager

Ashlyn is a homegrown Iowan (go Cyclones!). She graduated from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa in 2023 with a degree in Business Administration, Marketing, Public Relations, and Communications. Now, she serves as UniMovers' Community Outreach Manager. In her free time, she loves to try new restaurants, travel, watch baseball, and spend time with her dog!

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