Tips For Rewarding Nursing Home Visits

With the holidays upon us, many of us will be visiting friends and relatives in nursing homes. In order to make the visit rewarding, for you and your loved one, some advanced thought should be put into your visit.  I came across this valuable list of recommendations for nursing home visits compiled by Jennifer Davis, on staff at Hebrew Senior Life.

For residents that are alert the following is recommended:

  • Tips For Rewarding Nursing Home VisitsKeep them connected to the outside world with news about neighbors, family, friends and current events. Talk in a quiet place. Try to be at eye level with the person and speak slowly and clearly.
  • Encourage reminiscing. Bring photos or objects to share. Stimulate conversation about past achievements. If your loved one always tells you the same story, accept this. It’s your listening that shows that you still care.
  • Sometimes it’s enough to sit and just hold hands.
  • Empathize with a relative’s feeling of distress. Don’t try to deny its existence or argue with the resident who may be confused. It only gets the resident more agitated, and causes further loss in self-esteem.
  • Don’t use visits to give advice, scold or argue with the resident.

When a relative is too ill to talk:

  • Hold hands; provide touch by rubbing the person’s back.
  • Sing songs or play tapes of the person’s favorite music.
  • If you can, just sit and share being there without feeling like you have to do or say something.
  • Get to know staff, other residents and families to make the visit more pleasurable.

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Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa
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After I read Jonathan’s Nursing Home Blog, I decided to hire him to look into my wife’s treatment at a local nursing home. Jonathan did a great job explaining the process and the laws that apply to nursing homes. I immediately felt at ease and was glad to have him on my side. Though the lawsuit process was at times frustrating, Jonathan reassured me, particularly at my deposition. I really felt like Jonathan cared about my wife’s best interests, and I think that came across to the lawyers for the nursing home. Eric