Life is funny, it throws us twists and turns and some how we seem to adapt and move forward. Can you imagine how boring life would be without these interruptions, distractions and changes? Yes, with change comes adjustment which brings me to the topic of this week’s blog.
As we get older, adjustment to change may take longer. Sometimes our memories are not as good and we tend to become confused easier. Remember, when dealing with the elderly population, we need to take this into consideration. When you have a new resident entering your adult residential care community, it is important to pay particular attention to the fact that they will be going through some drastic change and as a result my require additional assistance and observation until they have had a chance to adjust to this change. For years they may have been accustomed to having a nightstand beside their bed in which they used for many things including a place to lay their glasses, use for assistance when getting out of bed, place their hearing aid, etc. and now, in this new bedroom, the night stand is placed across the room. They get up to use the restroom in the morning, reach for their glasses and the night stand is not in the place they had become accustomed to for years, they go to get out of bed and again the nightstand they had depended on to help support them as they got out of bed for several years is not there. Suddenly the staff hear a bang and run to the room to find the new resident on the floor. This could have been eliminated with a little extra assistance to the new resident, including a simple inquiry as to how the new residents room had been set-up at home previously and then making the attempt to make their room at the facility as similar in layout as possible. Documenting what times the resident normally uses the bathroom is a good note to communicate to all staff as well. Staff should be close if not in the room for the first few days or week to help the new resident when they rise from bed in the morning and at their normal bathroom time at night.
Those of you who have chosen to provide adult residential care services are in this business because you truly care about others. Change is good, however, it sometimes needs to be made with caution and care.