For adults who suffer from conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s, a memory care community can help to improve their quality of life. And while most families go to great lengths when a loved one gets diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or a different form of dementia, they may opt to bring professional caregivers into the home. However, as the disease develops, families will often encounter challenges. These can include agitation, wandering, and aggression — which can lead to moving our loved ones to a memory care community.
Quality of life in a memory care community
Many memory care communities offer support for seniors with dementia to feel empowered and productive. It also provides their families with peace of mind, knowing that their elderly family member is safe. Here are just some of the programs that memory care communities offer to help individuals with dementia:
- Carefully designed environments: One of the unfortunate realities that families face with dementia is wandering. Many memory care programs have been designed to offer safe environments to prevent seniors from wandering. Techniques such as memory boxes, visual cues, and open floor plans are also used to aid those with memory loss.
- Life-enriching activities: Many memory care programs offer life enrichment activities that are designed to make seniors feel productive by working with their remaining abilities. This is important for older adults who are struggling with memory loss and communication skills.
- Specially-trained caregivers: Memory care also provides your loved one with highly qualified caregivers, most of whom have undergone extra training to learn how to support adults with dementia. Caregivers are trained to provide our loved ones with better lives; from properly approaching adults with dementia to communicating with adults who have lost their verbal skills.
- Dedicated dining programs: A big concern for many families when a loved one has dementia is their nutrition. Some individuals with dementia may develop problems with swallowing which can increase the risk of choking. A memory care program will have staff available 24 hours a day to make sure that these challenges are addressed and their residents well nourished.
When it’s time to look for memory care
It is difficult to know the right time to consider placing our loved ones in a memory care community. To give you an idea, here are some signs that may indicate that your elderly family member is ready:
- Being unable to take part in events and activities at home
- Becoming lost or disoriented in familiar places
- Having difficulties with mobility and balance
- Vision impairment that puts them at risk of falling
- Difficulties with bladder control
- Poor financial judgment
- Unintended weight loss
Because Alzheimer’s caregivers go through a lot of work and have such exhausting schedules, it’s also important to take into account their stress and fatigue. If you or your loved ones caregiver feel overwhelmed, it may be the right time to look into memory care for a senior family member.
While it may be hard to discuss at first, providing our elderly loved ones with a memory care community might just be the best thing you can do to improve their quality of life. It not only provides you with the peace of mind that you need, but it also provides many benefits that help to improve the overall quality of life for family members who are experiencing dementia or Alzheimer’s. At Tapestry Senior Living, we provide the best care possible for vulnerable adults, so that they can continue living a good life. To find out more about our memory care community services, read our article on “A Family Guide to Funding Senior Care & Housing”.