Alzheimers is the sixth leading cause of death for people in America. It’s one of the few diseases that cannot be prevented, slowed down, or cured, and the only such disease out of the top 10 causes of death for Americans. One in every eight Americans over the age of 65 is suffering from Alzheimers, and 64% of people in this age group living in nursing homes have either Alzheimers or some other form of dementia. One of the most difficult choices for any child is when and if to put a beloved parent into assisted living, and especially if they are having memory issues. For those with Alzheimers, the right answer might be a memory care facility.
What Is Memory Care?Memory care facilities are specially designed assisted-living centers. Their purpose is to accommodate those with Alzheimers or other dementia, and this is what sets them apart from a traditional nursing home. Nursing homes that cater to a broader base of need will typically have some facilities to accommodate those with mild dementia, but for a memory care assisted living home, the whole point is to make it as easy as possible for a person to live life well with Alzheimers or dementia for as long as possible.
What Are the Benefits of Assisted Living?Many studies have shown that seniors experience both better health and more happiness when in an assisted living facility. Assisted living is intended to help residents live life to the fullest within the realities of their current condition. Some of the amenities that you can expect to find include:
- Physical activities and fitness classes.
- Opportunities for social activity. It can be very isolating for a senior citizen living at home, where they are often alone. When someone is experiencing memory issues in particular, it can be difficult to manage social relationships. Assisted living facilities are set up to encourage socialization through activities, outings, events, dances, and trips.
- A safe living environment. Memory care facilities in particular are especially designed to provide a safe living environment for all of the residents. While a typical nursing home will include some care and supervision, memory care facilities have specially designed supervised care and are architecturally adapted for Alzheimers patients and their needs. There will be extra emphasis on security to prevent anyone from being hurt.
- A relaxing environment. Because those who are suffering from dementia or Alzheimers typically find life to be stressful and sometimes confusing, a memory care facility will put a special emphasis on making sure the environment is relaxing.
- Specially prepared meals. Nutrition is just as important for seniors is for anyone else, and anyone suffering from Alzheimers or other dementia may need a bit of help getting a nutritious meal. Meals at memory care facilities are designed by nutritionists and prepared by chefs in order to make sure seniors are getting the nutrition they need.
- Help with daily activities. One of the stresses for those suffering from Alzheimers is having to keep up with daily chores. This can also be a stress for family members, but in a memory care facility residents will be given help dealing with all the daily tasks of living as well as all housekeeping and transportation chores. Daily living assistance is tailored to the particular condition of each individual resident, meaning that those who need more help can get it while those who need less help are able to function as independently as possible.
Putting a beloved parent or other family member into an assisted living situation is never an easy decision. However, today’s assisted living for those with dementia and Alzheimers is specifically designed to create the best possible environment for residents so that they can live life to the fullest. If you have a family member struggling with Alzheimers or any other form of dementia, look into memory care assisted living facilities in your area and see how they might be able to help.