Preparing for the Transition to
Assisted Living (Memory Care) – Part IV
Packing Furnishings & Personal Items for Your Loved One
As you’re preparing for your loved one’s transition into assisted living (memory care), packing the appropriate furnishings, personal care items, and household essentials is an important step. Like we did last month when packing your loved one’s clothing, it’s a good idea to make a list of the items needed beforehand. Of course, you always have the option of dropping off a care package after your loved one is settled in, but you’ll probably want to make sure they’re stocked up for the first week or two.
As a frame of reference, what you’ll need to pack for assisted living is similar to what you’d pack when moving into a small apartment, except that there is no kitchen. You’ll need to supply some basic furniture for your loved one’s apartment, bearing in mind the limited square footage. Although it may vary somewhat by specific unit, the typical apartment will house a bed, dresser, and a comfortable chair like a recliner. Many residents also prefer to have a television in their bedroom. Your loved one will need a laundry basket and two trash bins, one for the bedroom and one for the bathroom. You’ll need to pack all their bedding and some basic furnishings, such as curtains, wall art, and family photos. With regards to bedding, they’ll need three sets of sheets, as well as a waterproof mattress cover, ideally one that zips onto the mattress.
Assisted living units don’t come stocked with any bathroom supplies. In addition to packing an ample supply of toilet paper for your loved one, you’ll want to pack all their toiletry and personal care items, such as soap, hand sanitizer, shampoo/conditioner, a brush or comb, hair dryer, shaving products, tooth paste and/or denture cleanser, Kleenex, flushable wet wipes, nail clippers, incontinence briefs if needed, etc. If prescription glasses or reading glasses are worn, pack a few if possible. While this has, by no means, been an exhaustive list of what to pack, it should give you a sense for the scope of this move and, hopefully, a good basis to begin making your list. Over the next two months, we’ll cover What NOT to Bring to Assisted Living and How to Periodically Restock Supplies for Your Loved One. Staff at Iris Memory Care is always available to answer questions and help with the transition.