Moving into Long Term Care

We understand that moving can be difficult.

We’re here to help. A move can be a stressful event for anyone, but it is particularly difficult when someone moves into a nursing home. Changes in living arrangements, family relationships and health status are hard on everyone involved. However, there are some ways to make things easier.

Not just a room, a home

When you walk around Northwood, you will notice that each resident has something special or different about their room that makes it truly theirs. Here are some examples of items you can incorporate into a room to make it more familiar:

  • Favourite bedspread, quilt or pillow
  • Favourite chair
  • Favourite photos – include both old and new photos
  • Plant or flower arrangement
  • Handmade artwork from grandchildren
  • Paintings or prints of favourite scenes
  • Television to watch their favourite shows or videos
  • Magazines or books
  • Radio

Pet therapy

Northwood is a believer in pet therapy. If your loved one has favourite pet, it may be appropriate to bring it in for a visit. We just ask that you check in with staff before bringing in your pet.


If your loved one has hobbies such as knitting, drawing or playing cards, make sure they have the supplies they need. It may also be helpful to see if there are any neighbours that share their interests. Many hobbies can be more enjoyable when they’re done with a friend!

Transitioning to Care

There are many things you can do to help both you and your loved one adjust better:

  • Have patience. Your loved one will adjust to their new home eventually, but everyone is different.
  • Support and encourage. Give positive feedback and praise on each accomplishment, and encourage them to look forward to something meaningful.
  • Separate your feelings from theirs. Leave your thoughts and concerns at the door. The way you act and the feelings you convey may influence their adjustment.
  • Stay involved and informed. Get to know the staff and other residents and be involved in care planning.
  • Consider yourself part of the team. You know details about your loved one that are valuable to staff members.
  • Listen. Give your loved one the opportunity to voice their opinions, questions and concerns. Just having someone listen helps relieve anxiety.
  • Don’t lose your sense of humour. Laughter is a great way to break the ice and alleviate stress.
  • There are no set visiting hours at Northwood, so family and friends can stop by anytime that’s convenient to them and their loved one.