Tips for Dealing with Homesickness in Assisted Living

Category: Assisted Living

Moving to an assisted living facility can be a big adjustment, and feeling homesick is common for many seniors. It is normal to miss the comfort and familiarity of one’s home and routines. Fortunately, there are effective ways to cope with homesickness while settling into and enjoying one’s new residence.

An elderly man rests his head in his hand as he looks out the window.

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What Are Some Causes for Elderly Homesickness?

Several causes and reasons for elderly homesickness when moving into an assisted living facility could include:

  • Loss of independence: Moving into assisted living might mean giving up some level of independence, which can be difficult for some seniors
  • Separation from loved ones: Being away from family and friends can trigger feelings of loneliness
  • Changes in routines: Adjusting to a new daily schedule in unfamiliar surroundings can be overwhelming for some seniors, leading to feelings of homesickness
  • Memories of the past: Some seniors may experience homesickness when they think about their former home and the memories it holds after living in it for many years
  • Fear of the unknown: The uncertainty when transitioning from the familiar surroundings of home to a new environment can cause homesickness in the elderly

What Are the Physical Symptoms of Homesickness?

Homesickness in nursing homes and assisted living facilities can manifest with a variety of physical symptoms in the elderly, such as:

  • Insomnia or sleeping excessively
  • Lack of energy
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss
  • Experiencing headaches and body aches
  • Upset stomach
  • Experiencing anxiety and anxiousness
  • Elevated stress levels
  • Social withdrawal

How Long Does It Take to Get Adjusted to an Assisted Living Facility?

The amount of time it takes to adjust to an assisted living facility varies depending on the person and their unique circumstances. Some seniors may adapt relatively quickly, while others may require more time to feel comfortable in their new environment.

Generally, it is common for individuals to take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to settle into assisted living fully. Some of the factors that influence how fast people adjust include:

  • The individual’s personality and temperament
  • The level of support and encouragement provided by family members, caregivers, and staff
  • The amenities, activities, and social opportunities available at the assisted living facility
  • Any underlying health conditions, mental health issues, or emotional challenges that may make adjusting more difficult

Does Senior Homesickness Ever Go Away?

In most cases, senior homesickness usually diminishes as elderly individuals become more accustomed to their surroundings, establish routines, make new friends, and engage in activities and hobbies they enjoy. With the support of family members, caregivers, and staff at the assisted living facility, seniors gradually feel more comfortable and connected to their new home.

However, it’s important to recognize that some level of homesickness may resurface periodically even after feeling fully adjusted. Developing effective coping strategies can help alleviate feelings of homesickness should they arise, such as:

  • Staying in touch with friends, neighbors, and loved ones
  • Participating in activities and events available at the assisted living facility
  • Taking time to enjoy hobbies and other interests
  • Making new friends and social connections with others at the assisted living facility

Tips for Overcoming Homesickness

Overcoming homesickness is not difficult when you use these great tips:

  • Personalize your living space with photos, keepsakes, or items from your home that bring you comfort and remind you of happy memories
  • Engage in activities and social events offered at the assisted living facility to meet new people, make friends, and establish a sense of community
  • Remind yourself of the reasons why you chose to move to assisted living, such as access to quality care or amenities that enhance your well-being
  • Do not be afraid to share your feelings and concerns with the staff at the facility so they can help provide support
  • Schedule regular phone calls, video chats, or visits with friends and family

How Haven Health Helps Our Residents with Homesickness

At Haven Health, we understand moving into assisted living can cause homesickness. Our friendly, caring, and supportive staff help make the transition easier for our residents in several ways, including:

  • Emotional support: We let residents know it is okay to feel homesick when moving into a new home. We provide counseling services where residents can learn coping strategies to make the transition easier.
  • Social support: We take the time to get to know all of our residents before they move and personally welcome them when they arrive. We also introduce them to other residents who share similar activities, interests, and hobbies to help them start making new friends.
  • Practical support: We assist residents in setting up their rooms to create their own personal spaces with familiar furniture, items, and objects
  • Encourage independence: While our residents often need assistance with certain aspects of their routines, we still encourage them to maintain their independence as much as possible

Schedule a Tour of Haven Health’s Assisted Living Facilities Today

An aid sits with an elderly woman in an assisted living facility.

Experience the warmth and comfort of Haven Health’s pristine assisted living facilities with comfortable amenities. Schedule a tour today to see our welcoming environment, compassionate care, and engaging staff firsthand, and why we are the best assisted living facility in Arizona. Together, we can make the transition to assisted living easier while helping you overcome homesickness.

Contact us now to book a tour and discover why Haven Health is the perfect place to call home.


Guarnotta, E. (2023). Homesickness: Signs, Effects & 7 Ways to Cope.

Guide to Helping Seniors Deal with Homesickness.

Van Dis, K. (2023). A Checklist for Moving Into Assisted Living.