Moving into an assisted living community is much more than simply relocating into a new home and continuing on with life as before. When someone moves into an assisted living community, his/her entire life is changing. There are many positives to living in a community setting with the help of others at one’s fingertips, but it’s not always the easiest transition for the person making the move and/or his/her loved ones. When a person decides that they would like to move into a communal setting like Cedarhurst, the process is different for everyone.
Some of our elders and their families are overjoyed and cannot wait to experience this new way of living. They spend months packing up their life into boxes, downsizing significantly to fit into their new apartment, and continuing their journey into a new home. They come into the community bright- eyed and bushy-tailed with a positive attitude. They rave about the food and activities and how nice it is to have people around again.
Others can take this process much differently.
Try to imagine that one day your children tell you that you aren’t capable of living alone and taking care of yourself anymore, and you will need to move out of your house of 50 years or more to come live in an assisted living community. The process is filled with apprehension, excitement, and anxiety. Moving can be stressful for anyone, but especially during this time in one’s life. The term Transfer Trauma is used to define this period of time and the feelings associate with it.
Transfer Trauma is a real obstacle that isn’t discussed very often, so families don’t understand that this is a common happening. Transfer Trauma or relocation stress refers to a specific set of symptoms and outcomes that result from a transfer from one environment to another. Some of the more common symptoms associated with Transfer Trauma include: anxiety, depression, a sense of feeling lost, insomnia and/or fatigue.
At Cedarhurst, we take extra precautions to help prevent Transfer Trauma and ease elders into their new environment. When we recognize these symptoms in a new resident, we address it head on. We do everything we can to make the resident feel as comfortable and included as possible. Over time, Cedarhurst becomes home and we become part of their family.
Although making Cedarhurst your new home may be filled with many emotions both positive and negative, we are here to let you know that everything you are feeling is completely normal and we are here to help in any way we can. Cedarhurst is here for a purpose – to work together to make the lives of our elders safe, happy, well rounded and filled with love.