How to Brighten a Nursing Home Bedroom
Moving is often a traumatic event. But when moving means going from home to a nursing home, the patient may be depressed, disoriented or uneasy. As with any move, many known things have been left behind. Knowing which way to turn to use a bathroom may seem like a simple thing until you lose it. Knowing where your clothes are, where your food is, and what can be found by looking out the window are all bits of knowledge that one has to relearn whenever a move is made. But when the move is made to a nursing home, the atmosphere is also sacrificed and patients often complain of not feeling at home in their new surroundings. The nursing home needs to be clean and orderly, but patients are looking for comfy and homelike. That's where loved ones can really step up by learning how to brighten a nursing home bedroom.
The Bed and its covering. When senior citizens move into nursing homes some well meaning relatives try to be helpful by purchasing a new comforter or bedspread and blankets for the nursing home bedroom. As well as well-intentioned and costly as these efforts may have been, it's possible that they might miss the mark.
To the extent possible many seniors would prefer to keep the bed clothing that is familiar to them. Going into a new home may be less fearful when the senior looks at the bed, as he and she will each day, and sees something that reminds them of the comfort of home. If the old bed is beyond use, then a change is in the off. Even so it is perhaps best to select comforters and blankets that are vaguely reminiscent of what is being replaced. When possible, the best advice is to talk to the patient before any purchase is made.
Furniture Some nursing homes now allow patients to bring a limited amount of furniture with them as they transition. A friendly chair, a small chest of drawers or a lamp that has been in the family forever could be just the thing to brighten a nursing home bedroom with very little effort. Obviously such additions to the room will depend on available space and building rules. But sometimes making a few additions is just a matter of asking. Remember the job of the nursing home is to provide a place for comfort and well being. Part of that well being has to do with making things look like a bit more like home. Sometimes a stick or two of furniture can help get the job done.
Family Pictures Of The Nursing Home Residents Most Missing About Home Is The Presence Of Family. You can not bring live people into the room on a regular basis but you can brighten a nursing home bedroom by bringing in an appropriate number of pictures. Do your best to make pictures of all parts of the family. If possible include pictures for hanging and some for standing on top of a bureau. You can help extend the feeling of family if some of the pictures you choose are of family members and the patient together.
Some people in an effort to bring family into the room bring so many pictures that what has been created is simply a monument to clutter. If you find that the patient enjoys the pictures you can try to rotate them occasionally or add to the enjoyment by bringing in an album or a collage that has numerous photos without the mess.
Decorative pieces. Did your loved one have a collection of small horse figurines or a dozen snow globes? You can not bring them all in but some of these beloved collectibles can help brighten a nursing home bedroom by making it feel like home again. Some older people live in homes filled with plants. Every room and every different lighting situation provides a haven for a variety of plants or other. If the nursing room has a window sills then a few plants will also add to the homey feeling. Choose plants that require infrequent watering and make sure that family members do their best to keep plants watered and fed as needed.
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Reading material. Seniors in a nursing home environment often find time on their hands. At home on a long afternoon they might have gone to the magazine rack or bookcase and pulled out a favorite. One way to brighten up a nursing home bedroom is to make sure that your loved one has on hand a few magazines, picture books, or large print editions from home. Bird books, travel books and books that show local scenes all can help the patient to find a comfortable moment and a place that reminds them of being at home. Family members can take it upon themselves to bring in updated reading material as time goes by.
Guests No matter how you try to brighten up a nursing home with inanimate objects the sun will really break through the best when friendly faces from days gone by stop for a visit. As a giver you can not be at your loved one's side every moment of the day. But in your own way you can encourage others from amongst the family, neighbors or old friends to stop by by time to time. The first visit will be the most difficult for anyone because they too will be feeling a bit disoriented and uncomfortable. But once that initial visit has been made it should become progressively easier to sit especially if each guest knows how much he or she is doing to brighten up the nursing home of someone dear to them.
None of us can make aging relatives young again. But accepting the aging process is not the same thing as giving up on providing the highest quality of life possible for those we love. One way to help a loved one is to consider following a few of these tips for brightening up a nursing home bedroom. The more the room is like home the more at home your loved one is likely to feel.