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How to Help Seniors Prepare for Unplanned Hospital Visits

Learn how to help seniors prepare for unplanned hospital visits with tips from companion care at home providers to make these events less stressful and more manageable.
Companion care at home can help make hospital visits less stressful for seniors.
Companion care at home can help make hospital visits less stressful for seniors.

Sudden hospital trips can be incredibly stressful for seniors and their loved ones. However, with some preparation and tips from companion care at home providers, these unexpected events can be less chaotic and more manageable.


Strategies for Unplanned Hospital Visits

Hospital trips can be physically and emotionally taxing, but being prepared can help reduce this stress and make the experience smoother for both seniors and their loved ones. Some of the items to gather in preparation include the following:

  • Documents: One of the most important steps is to make sure all of the senior’s important documents are in one place. This might include identification and insurance cards, a list of medications and medical history, and any legal documents that might be needed, such as Power of Attorney paperwork.
  • Personal Comfort Items for Seniors: To help seniors feel more comfortable during their hospital stay, companion care at home caregivers and loved ones can help them gather personal items, such as a favorite blanket, book, or something else that helps keep them calm. In addition to personal items for comfort, seniors will also need the items they use each day, such as their glasses, dentures, or hearing aids.
  • Entertainment Items: While seniors might not want to engage in these items, having them in case they do can help pass the time. Their favorite card game, small puzzles that fit on the bed tray, or a craft activity are all things that can be easily packed for the trip ahead of time.
  • Warm Clothing: Hospitals are commonly cold in temperature. In addition to their favorite blanket listed above, consider adding cozy socks or a cardigan to help keep them warm. Also, comfortable clothing should be worn, if possible, under their hospital gown.


Communication Is Important to Help Seniors Prepare for Hospital Visits

Discussing potential hospital visits with your senior ahead of time is essential. Understanding their preferences and having a plan can make a significant difference. If necessary, loved ones should discuss things like preferred hospitals and necessary medical information.

Companion care at home services can further this discussion by helping seniors feel less anxious about possible hospital stays and providing them with valuable education about health conditions.

It’s also important to consider the special needs of seniors when faced with hospital visits, whether planned or unplanned. For instance, seniors with dementia may have a particularly hard time since the hospital setting is unfamiliar. Not only that but the bright lights and noise might add to their agitation and confusion. If seniors have specific conditions that require specialized care, talk with the medical team and companion care at home providers to see what can be done to make the transition from home to the hospital easier.


Being prepared for sudden hospital trips can significantly reduce stress and ensure seniors receive the best care. By planning ahead, gathering the necessary items, and utilizing available resources, companion care at home and seniors’ loved ones can help them handle these situations confidently and easily.



If you or an aging loved one are considering Companion Care at Home in Berkeley, CA, please contact the caring staff at Aviva In-Home Care today at (415) 463-1400

Aviva In-Home Care provides exceptional senior home care in the Bay Area, including San Francisco, Burlingame, San Mateo, Hillsborough, Atherton, Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Berkeley, Lafayette, Orinda, and surrounding areas.




Evan Loevner

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