Most cognitive impairments like amnesia, dementia, and Alzheimer’s are progressive. This suggests that, unfortunately, they are going to almost certainly worsen over time and need long-term care. While things like dementia care can feel like a depressing condition, it is important to recognize that your beloved can still experience numerous moments of happiness.
Dementia and other cognitive impairments including amnesia can be slowed or paused for periods. This is contingent on having the proper healthcare scenario, which usually means a memory care facility. The level of care that today’s memory care facilities provide can help residents maintain their quality of life, even while their cognitive impairment worsens. P professional staff members can provide 24/7 care with specialized training for the care of loved ones affected by these conditions.
Unfortunately, it is often quite challenging to navigate your options and choose the best memory care facility to look after your beloved. Every facility and community varies and each has different pros and cons.
What Does Memory Care Mean?
When we consider what happens to the body as someone reaches adulthood, most folks consider symptoms like arthritis, poor hearing, reduced eyesight, and wrinkles. However, cognitive decline in some form is also common among the elderly. Adding a condition like dementia, this decline can start having severe effects. Those affected by reduced eyesight can easily get some stronger prescription glasses, but those with Alzheimer’s or dementia do not have an option for treatment. This makes the necessity for specialized care even more important.
Alzheimer’s and dementia are the two most common in memory care facilities across the country. These communities are specifically designed to supply look after seniors handling dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other cognitive impairments. Since these conditions can cause an abundance of symptoms at different levels of severity, memory care facilities are prepared to handle a wide range of needs. Basic services like meal prep, laundry, and housekeeping should be included, but specialized medical aid and a high level of assistance with daily activities are additionally essential. Certain activities and therapies can promote a connection between the individual and their interests and favorite hobbies.
Some senior living communities focus solely on memory care in response to the unique challenges these conditions create. Others, like continuing care retirement communities, have a memory care unit set in its area.
Memory care communities typically use design elements that, consistent with research, help to scale back stress levels in those with dementia or Alzheimer’s. Circular layouts boosted natural lighting, and memory boxes are typical design elements used in these facilities.
Experts say that about 6 out of 10 Alzheimer’s patients tend to “wander,” so memory care facilities must take precautions with residents to prevent them from exiting the premises and getting lost. These precautions typically include heavy supervision by the staff, security alarms on exterior doors, and frequent safety checks.
Improving Quality of Life and Ensuring Safety
Memory care communities are known to provide an improved quality of life for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients. Generally, residents in these facilities take less medication, have a reduced risk of falls and injuries, show improved wellness and overall nutrition, enjoy more independence, and take fewer trips to the hospital. As much as 75 percent of residents in memory care communities experience a slowed or stalled progression of symptoms.
Programs to Handle Behavioral Issues
Most memory care facilities also provide therapeutic programs to enhance memory impairment issues, wandering frequency, and other common behavioral issues. In turn, they boost the standard of life for their residents. Advanced programs that provide personalized therapy for each unique individual are especially successful. Memory care facilities also are adding programming to handle every different stage of those diseases for even more success.
A common misconception about memory care units is that they isolate seniors with these memory-related conditions. While the memory care units could potentially be separated from a bigger senior living community, the specialized staff makes sure that residents stay engaged as much as possible.
The Family’s Needs
Peace of mind is a tremendous thing and knowing that your beloved is receiving highly skilled, 24-hour care provides just that. Memory care facilities usually offer frequent outreach opportunities for the families of their residents. Memory care is not only for the individual handling cognitive impairment, but they also serve the requirements of that individual’s family.
Making Your Decision
All quality memory care facilities offer outreach and education for caregivers and families. However, it is still essential that you simply do your research before deciding that a specific facility is the right one for your beloved.