When it comes to life decisions that need to be made concerning senior living and various healthcare options for a loved one who may be struggling with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia, the path ahead may seem a bit daunting. A good place to start is understanding what memory care is all about, especially when searching for a community that specializes in this type of senior care — a place you can trust that has your loved one’s best interests in mind.
Memory Care: The Basics
Essentially, memory care is a more extensive, comprehensive aspect of assisted living, one entirely geared around meeting the very specific needs of individuals struggling with various types of dementia (Alzheimer’s being the most prevalent). This high-level care approach is designed to provide a safe and structured environment for seniors with enriching activities, support and supervision, events, and therapies that stimulate memory, enhance cognitive function, and create opportunities to engage and stay active.
From the design and layout of the community to the highly trained staff members and person-centered care offered, memory care programs advocate the highest quality of life centered on purposeful living for individuals suffering from dementia-related diseases. Because of the degenerative nature of many of the cognitive conditions, memory care accommodates the needs of individuals based on the status/progression of their disease in a place that helps them flourish as much as possible.
Is It Time for Memory Care?
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the answers to the following questions will help guide the decision about whether it’s time for memory care:
- Is the person with dementia becoming unsafe in their current home?
- Is the health of the person with dementia or my health as a caregiver at risk?
- Are the person’s care needs beyond my physical abilities?
- Am I becoming a stressed, irritable, and impatient caregiver?
- Am I neglecting work responsibilities, my family, and myself?
- Would the structure and social interaction at a community offering memory care benefit the person with dementia?
If you’re currently providing care for a loved one dealing with memory loss and you answered yes to any of the above questions, then it might be a good indicator that it’s time to shift from a home environment to a place that specializes in memory care.
Finding the Right Place
It’s important to do the necessary research when searching for the right memory care community for your loved one, and the best place to start is online. To learn more about a community and what they offer, visit their website to review what kind of care, activities, living arrangements, treatments, etc. are offered. Another step would be to read online reviews via Yelp, Google, social media, etc. — some of the best insight you’ll get on this journey is from those who have gone before you on this path.
Perhaps the most important thing you can do when searching for the best memory care community is to schedule a tour to get in-person insight. Some things to look for include layout and physical environment, cleanliness, staff (training, interaction with residents, etc.), dining, activities, pet policy, costs, and availability of continuing care. Also, have a list of questions ready to help guide what you’re looking for, which will affect your final decision.
Selecting the right memory care community for your loved one requires some research. You want to know that the utmost in quality care will be consistently provided by a compassionate team of medical experts and caregivers in a safe, comforting environment.
Do still have unanswered questions about Memory Care? Contact us today and we’d love to talk about how we can help!