Common Fears of Elderly People Moving into a Care Home

The decision to move into a nursing home is a big life change. As such, it comes accompanied with common and understandable fears.

If you are faced with helping a loved one make this decision, it’s useful to be aware of what might cause them to feel fearful. It’s also crucial that you know how best to explain that, although their anxiety is understandable, moving into a care home can be a hugely positive step.

Here’s a few examples of common fears that many residents suffer with and how we can help them overcome these issues.

  • Loss of independence

The fear:

Many people worry that moving into a care home signals a loss of their independence and that they will no longer be able to make decisions for themselves.

The reality:

Moving into a care home can actually improve an individual’s independence by providing them with the help and tools they need to live their life to the fullest.

Residents at Melrose are encouraged to continue with their hobbies, such as arts and crafts, gardening and flower arranging. There’s computer facilities available too, along with computing lessons that can help any resident who wishes to sharpen up their IT skills.

Additionally, residents are free to take part in the programme of activities on offer. This includes board games, walks, fitness sessions, singing groups, visits and even relaxing massages.

The aim of a nursing home is not to hinder independence, but is in fact to encourage and support the elderly in living as independent a life as possible, while helping them where needed.

  • Becoming a burden

The fear:

Elderly people often feel that, if their relatives are encouraging them to move to a care home, it is because they have become a burden to them. But this couldn’t be further from the truth.

The reality:

Families usually start to look at the option of a care home for their elderly relative because they care deeply about their quality of life. They view a care home as a means to facilitate an improvement in their general happiness and well being.

Practically speaking, living in a care home means that loved ones can enjoy the company of their elderly relative free from the burdens of certain stresses, which come from living at home.  This means that time together is not spent catching up on necessary chores but is actually quality time.

This should be viewed as a positive way of improving your relationship by giving both parties a break from things like repairs, cleaning and cooking. You can eat together without having to worry about the washing up. Similarly, things that you might find fun, like gardening, can still be enjoyed without you both wondering who will do the sweeping up afterwards.

  • Being reliant on other people

The fear:

Elderly people are often reluctant to accept help because they don’t want to admit to themselves, or anyone else, that they are struggling.

The reality:

Accepting help can lead to a more comfortable way of living. This in turn can increase the enjoyment they get out of life.

At Melrose Care, help will be on hand 24 hours a day. We offer a fresh and flexible catering service, activities, including everything from fitness to arts and crafts, as well as medical needs supplied by experts who get to know all residents well. This allows them to fully understand their individual needs.

  • The unknown

The fear:

This is a fear that is widely felt by many people of all ages. In this instance though, it’s most likely to manifest itself through a fear of a loss of a familiar environment.

If they have lived in their home for a very long time, it may provide a feeling of safety and comfort. Moving out of this and into a care home can be scary.

The reality:

The best way of overcoming this fear is by seeing just how warm, friendly and homely a care home can be. We have information available on our website about our excellent accommodation. But of course, if you’d prefer, the best option may be to ask your relative if they would like to see a high quality care home for themselves.

This way, they can ask questions and you can see what kind of environment might work best for them should they choose to take advantage of its benefits.

  • Being alone

The fear:

Most of us fear being alone from time to time, but this fear can become more acute with age. This is especially true if a person has suffered the loss of loved ones.


This also becomes one of the primary fears when it comes to moving home. Your relative may worry that a change in situation will come with a loss of companionship between those who they currently see regularly.

The reality:

You can reassure them that this is not the case. In fact, a move into a care home will lead to more quality time together, as opposed to time spent performing chores.

In addition, they will also have the chance to forge long-lasting friendships with their fellow residents, as well as with our friendly stuff. This is likely the best way of explaining that these fears, although understandable, are unfounded.

If you’d like to know more about Melrose Care in Worthing, West Sussex, and would like to arrange a visit, call us on 01903 230406 or email