5 things you must know about memory care facilities

5 things you must know about memory care facilities

Sometimes, caring for your loved one at home with Alzheimer’s or dementia becomes extremely challenging. To make life easier for your loved one and you, you may want to consider memory care for them. Memory care is a type of senior living that offers 24-hour care for people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of memory disorders. If you’re wondering what memory care facilities are all about, and whether it is beneficial for seniors, then you’ve come to the right place. Here, we discuss some of the key things you need to know about memory care facilities.

Trained staff

Perhaps the best thing about memory care facilities is that they have specially trained professionals to help people with dementia. The staff tends to the seniors who experience cognitive decline most effectively; they also receive training in other important areas, such as feeding tubes and oxygen supplementation. Regular training sessions and experience help the staff understand people with memory problems better each day, because of which they are able to provide the most suitable care to all kinds of individuals. Although staff training in memory care facilities can vary from one state to another, generally, whoever comes in contact with the residents — including housekeepers and dishwashers — need to receive special training.

Uniquely designed facilities

Another impressive feature of memory care facilities is that they are made with the safety and comfort of people with dementia in mind. The entire facility is mostly color-coded to help people with memory problems navigate their way and not feel anxious about getting lost. Seniors with dementia tend to wander, so the building is accordingly designed to eliminate the risk of falling or slipping. Moreover, secured doors with alarms, keypads, or other controlled entry/exit, security cameras, and personal monitoring devices are used as an added security level. The whole environment of memory care facilities is carefully designed by dementia care experts to encourage seniors to become independent.

Special cognitive therapies

Cognitive therapies address memory loss, prevent wandering, and reduce other side effects of dementia. However, the kind of therapy an individual needs depends on various factors. Some of the common therapies offered by most memory care facilities include art therapy, pet therapy, light therapy, music therapy, aromatherapy, reminiscence therapy, storytelling, and sensory stimulation. It is found that various kinds of innovative therapies can help alleviate symptoms of dementia and improve quality of life.

Variety of social activities

Enough studies suggest that people with cognitive impairments can benefit from music, art, gardening, and dancing. The goal of activities is to stimulate the mind, improve motor skills, and provide social interaction. So, memory care facilities usually offer all these activities. Sometimes, the activities may also be outdoors, such as taking seniors to bird-watching or shopping. All activities are extremely safe, as they are led by trained staff and volunteers who understand people with memory issues very well. Also, people who run these facilities ensure that none of the residents feel isolated, so they organize numerous activities to suit people at different stages of dementia.

Can be expensive

The comprehensive care and numerous benefits of memory care facilities come at a higher cost. According to Genworth’s Cost of Care Survey, the average cost of these facilities was between $5,000 and $5,250 per month in 2019, which is over $1,000 more than the cost for assisted living facilities. However, it’s worth mentioning again that in memory care facilities, everything from the staff to the building is tailored to meet the specific needs of people struggling with memory disorders. So, make sure that you consider all of this before you make the big decision of registering your loved one in one of the facilities.