Where Better Care is a Family Matter

Celebrating the Holidays with Loved Ones in Nursing Homes

holidays nursing homes

The holidays are a wonderful time of year for so many, but for others, it can be an uncomfortable reminder that they aren’t able to enjoy them like they used to. If your loved one has transitioned from independent or assisted living into full-time care at a nursing home, the holidays can be an extra sensitive time where worry of how they will celebrate or wondering if their loved ones will even include them in their celebrations is often the focal point of their thoughts.

It’s important that our loved ones know and feel that they are still a crucial part of our lives, no matter where they reside. From personal experience in watching our residents and their families over the last several decades enjoying the holidays together, Elmhurst Extended Care Center has come up with three very important ways you can celebrate the holidays with your loved ones in nursing homes this season.

Collect Holiday Cards

While your loved one might not have an entire house to decorate for the holidays now that they’re in a nursing home, getting them into the holiday spirit is easy to do by bringing in holiday cards.

Collect holiday cards from their friends and family and find a special place for them in their room at the nursing home facility. Hang them up on the wall or display them on a nightstand or dresser. Whatever you do, make sure your loved one will be able to easily see and enjoy them on a daily basis.

Thinking of putting together a holiday card yourself? Try adding a family photo to yours this year! Having photos of loved ones on display is always a bright spot that makes residents feel that much more at home when they’re residing at a long-term care facility.

Cook Their Favorite Dishes

Is there a specific meal your loved one always looked forward to each holiday season? What about special desserts or homemade recipes passed down through the generations?

While nursing homes do provide excellent, balanced meals focused on your loved one’s dietary needs, the holidays are a time when family traditions and special meals come into focus. Nursing homes residents often feel they might not be able to partake in those traditions any longer, so bringing in their favorite dishes can really make a great impact.

If your loved one isn’t big on surprises, talk with them before you plan to get together and have them help make a menu for the celebration. That way, you’ll know the food items they’re really looking forward to and can ensure they’ll be included.

Make It a Family Affair

If your loved one was used to large family gatherings around the holidays before they moved to a nursing home, celebrating with just one or two people can leave them feeling sad and alone. Talk with the other members of your family and see if you can plan a time where you are all able to come together to celebrate and give your loved one a holiday season to remember.

Check with your nursing home facility ahead of time to see if you can reserve some extra space the day of your gathering where your loved one and guests can feel right at home in your private celebration.

Whatever you do, make sure to celebrate! Even if you’re unable to bring the normal large gathering together, get as many to join as you can, and make the holidays in a nursing home for your loved one extra special this year.

Are you wanting to plan a gathering for your loved one this holiday season and need to reserve space? Give Elmhurst Extended Care Center a call today!

Interview with Anne, Short Term Rehabilitation Center Patient

Former short term patient, Anne, discusses how EECC’s expert staff at our rehabilitation center helped her after she broke her hip.

When Anne found herself in the hospital after a fall that broke her hip, she wasn’t sure where to turn for her short term rehabilitation care. After choosing to use our rehabilitation center, she found that she received more than just the ability to get back on her feet.

We caught up with Anne to see how her rehab at EECC helped her get in even better shape than she was before.

What procedure or situation occurred that required you to need a rehabilitation center?

I was at home when I felt the urge to use the restroom. I live in a split level and had to go up a few stairs to get to it.

I’m not sure what happened but next thing I knew, I had fallen and slid down a few stairs and was in a lot of pain. I called my son, and he told me to call 911. The paramedics arrived and took me to the hospital.

When I got there, they took x-rays and told me my hip was broken. I was bruised all over.

How easy did you find the process to be in setting up rehab through EECC?

It was extremely easy for me.

Because I was stuck in the hospital there wasn’t much I could do to research where to go. I chose Elmhurst Extended Care Center because they visited me in the hospital and explained what would happen next and what to expect. It was nice because they offered to explain and help me whether I chose to go to Elmhurst Extended Care or not.

They seemed like the only ones that really cared. They just wanted to make sure I understood what was going on and were there to help.

What was your stay like? The staff?

I couldn’t say enough about my stay. First off, the place is extremely clean and well maintained.

It doesn’t smell!

I’ve been to other places to visit friends, and it either smells bad or like too much air freshener. At Elmhurst Extended Care it doesn’t smell like anything. It’s just clean.

My room was nice and bright. It had a big window letting in lots of light which looked out into the neighborhood. I had my own bathroom, fridge, and big screen TV. The room was well decorated.

Although the aesthetics were nice, the staff is really what makes Elmhurst Extended Care Center a hidden treasure. The CNAs were attentive and so kind. They always were smiling and happy to help.

The therapy staff was amazing. They saw me within an hour of me arriving and were there everyday to work with me. Because of them, I am in better shape than before I even broke my hip.

What did you enjoy the most about choosing to go through short term rehabilitation with EECC?

I enjoyed being around so many wonderful and caring people.

I was nervous about going anywhere but when I arrived at Elmhurst Extended Care, my worries went away immediately. The staff cared for me and wanted me to be happy. I could feel I was in good hands.

My son didn’t have to worry about a thing either. I hate being a burden on him, but he didn’t even miss a day of work.

How do you feel your mobility, health, and situation have improved since going through EECC’s short term rehabilitation program?

Like I said before, I’m better now than I was before I fell down the stairs.

I recommend Elmhurst Extended Care to anyone who needs help. If anything happens to me in the future, I’ll definitely go back to see my friends at Elmhurst Extended Care.

If you or a loved one are in need of a short term rehabilitation center that offers much more than just physical therapy, give Elmhurst Extended Care Center a call today!