More and more seniors have come to recognize the benefits of aging within a healthy community provided by senior living retirement homes. As a result of this high demand, various housing options start to sprout up–from independent living facilities to resort retirement communities.
Fortunately, senior communities not only cater to independent and non-disabled seniors – but also to the ones who need an extra pair of skilled hands to provide assistance and support. One such facility is a memory care unit.
Memory care, sometimes also called Alzheimer’s care, refers to a senior facility that provides 24-hour assistance and care to older adults with dementia and other forms of the disease. It aims to enhance the lives of seniors with dementia by giving them a safe environment and catering to their unique needs.
If you have a loved one diagnosed with dementia, then you are probably contemplating the benefits of transitioning him/her into memory care near you.
To help you decide, here are seven reasons why moving your loved one into a memory care unit is a great idea.
1. Memory Care Provides a Person-Centered Approach
Memory care facilities understand that each senior with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease has distinct needs and preferences. That’s why most facilities provide an individualized approach to dementia care.
With the help of the seniors and their loved ones, caregivers will develop a personalized care plan for each resident. They will structure their services based on each seniors’ history, abilities, and lifestyle. Thus, allowing the facility to meet the patients’ exact needs and improve their quality of life.
2. It Has a Soothing Environment
Anybody will exchange a raucous surrounding for a calm and soothing environment. The former only makes your day stressful and irritating, right? Well, the same goes for individuals with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
The confusion and memory loss brought by the disease makes seniors more sensitive to stress and sudden changes in their surroundings. They need a calm and soothing place to help them rest, concentrate, and feel safe–a place that can be provided by a memory care community near you.
These facilities are specifically designed to lessen confusion, agitation, and other difficult behaviors. You can see these things in the design and structure of the community areas, such as:
- A private and personalized apartment residence.
- Identified common areas, which can feature soothing colors and patterns.
- An enclosed courtyard.
- Well-lit spaces and walking paths.
- Minimal noise inside the community.
3. It Provides Specialized Medical Services
Unlike other senior homes, a memory care facility caters to the specialized medical needs of elderlies with dementia. They provide basic healthcare services like medication management, transportation to doctor’s appointments, nutritional needs, and mobility support.
Some facilities also offer supportive therapies, such as rehabilitation services, speech therapy, music, art, and reminiscence therapy.
Further, they work closely and often coordinate care plans with the residents’ healthcare providers to better improve seniors’ health. Also, some facilities employ in-house healthcare professionals to assess the health of each resident.
4. It Offers Round-the-Clock Assistance
Caregivers and the staff in these facilities are experienced in providing 24/7 care and assistance to the residents. Memory care encourages independence for seniors who are capable, but if needed, they can aid your loved one in doing their daily living activities, such as:
- Bathing, toileting, and dressing.
- Meal preparation and eating.
- Going for walks and other mobility activities.
- Housekeeping, laundry, and home maintenance.
Further, caregivers have a way of handling challenging behaviors while still emanating compassion and kindness. Their first response is to soothe a senior using the proper techniques and not with force nor drug interventions.
Even at night, facilities have an appropriate number of staff that can efficiently attend to the needs of every resident and during emergencies.
5. It Promotes Physical and Mental Health
As dementia progresses, your loved one’s ability to tend to their physical and mental health will decline. Their interest in engaging with such activities may also decrease over time because of memory and mobility problems.
However, the best memory care community is equipped to handle these kinds of things. They promote physical wellness by encouraging and supporting seniors during their exercises. For older adults with mobility issues, chair-based workouts and stretching routines can help get their bodies moving.
Along with physical activity, memory care facilities can also help your loved ones retain their brain and mental health. They provide memory-enhancing and mind-stimulating activities perfect for seniors with dementia, like:
- Simple games, such as puzzles, scrabble, or crossword puzzles.
- Doing arts and crafts like collage making or scrapbooking.
- Playing chess.
- Reading for the bibliophile seniors.
- Writing and journaling.
- Listening to music and dancing to the beat.
- Helping in household chores.
These activities allow seniors to remain engaged and physically active, thus slowing down the disease’s progression. It also ensures that their excellent health remains intact.
6. It Allows Social Engagement
Many seniors battling dementia or Alzheimer’s disease become socially disconnected over time. Mainly, it is due to the disease’s cognitive symptoms and the misery of having to suffer such an illness.
Memory care communities address this by gradually encouraging them to participate in social activities and events. Further, caregivers know how to introduce such activities so that seniors won’t get intimidated and overwhelmed.
In addition, your loved ones can interact with other seniors in the community that have the same interests as them.
7. It Prioritizes Safety and Security
Lastly, memory care units can provide a safe and secured community to your loved one. Besides round-the-clock staff presence, most facilities have secured and alarmed doors so no one can wander and accidentally go out at night. Also, they have enclosed outdoor spaces and activity rooms.
Other security and safety measures some of the facilities have are:
- Emergency buttons inside the residents’ rooms.
- Railings on walk paths.
- Anti-slip mats and supportive railings in the bathroom.
- Keeping potential hazardous products and appliances away.
- Well-lit living spaces and outdoor areas even at night.
Start searching now for the best memory care near you so your senior loved one can start living their best life.