How to keep your loved ones happy in a nursing home

The key to a long life filled with happiness and joy? “Having peace in your heart,” replied Jessie Jordan, a 106-year-old nursing home resident. Luckily for Jessie, he has made his peace with the fact he lives in a nursing home. Unfortunately, many seniors struggle to adjust when they transition into a nursing home environment. 

There are lots of things you can do to help them out though. In this article, we are going to explore some of them. The nursing home your loved ones choose should be doing their part to help the transition as well, and if they are not, it could be a sign that you need to find a better one. In particular, you should stay away from the top 10 worst nursing homes here.

The Transition

The actual move into the nursing home is one of the most stressful parts of the whole experience. It is vitally important, then, to try and ensure that this step goes smoothly.

Some ways you can make the transition a whole lot easier include:

  • Taking the time to really explain to your loved one the benefits of moving into a nursing home – make it relevant to them.
  • Personalizing your relative’s space before they move in is another great way to ease the transition. A good idea is to make it look as much like their old room at home as possible.
  • If your loved one’s spouse is still alive, see if they can move in too. Studies have shown that close proximity to spouses protected them from many of the problems that come with old age.



Nursing homes can allow your loved one the chance to build new friendships, which is something that many isolated elderly people struggle with. Just like a child, it can be important to encourage them here. Here are some tips:

  • Encourage interaction with the other residents.
  • Visit as often as you can.
  • Arrange for old friends or neighbors to visit.



Studies have shown that elderly patients who engage in the activities that are on offer at their nursing home have increased health and brain functions. Most good nursing homes will have activities planned throughout the day, and there should be something for everyone. These nursing homes use advanced housing association software, which helps them to manage elderly care. Some great activities to encourage your loved one to take part in include:

  • Crafts like drawing, knitting, and painting.
  • Bingo.
  • Dance lessons and music for those more physically able.
  • Therapy animal sessions.

The health of your loved one is as important as their wellbeing. There are numerous studies that highlight that happiness, health, and quality of life go hand in hand. This means that if your loved one takes part in activities they enjoy, takes part in socializing and is comfortable in their room, they are more likely to be healthier in general.

By following the above steps, transitioning your reluctant loved one into a home should be a lot easier. In most cases, after the initial transition period is over, and the correct steps and encouragement is in place. Your loved one will probably warm to the idea, and they may even be thankful.


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