Things You Didn’t Know About Assisted Living Memory Care

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Like many other adults, you may wish your parents to live their senior years at home. However, that option might not be feasible if your parents suffer from dementia. Fortunately, there is a very good alternative for elderly adults who are unable to cope on their own due to cognitive impairment. Assisted living memory care communities can help improve the quality of life for people living with dementia. As an assisted living and memory care provider, we share a few details of this senior living option. 

Specially Trained Staff 

Caregivers at memory care communities will be specially trained to ensure proper care for people suffering from dementia and cognitive disorders. These staff will know to understand the signs of pain in residents. This is a very important skill as patients with advanced dementia problems will not be able to communicate their distress. Caregivers in assisted living memory care communities will not only know what triggers anxiety or agitation in people suffering from Alzheimer’s but will also be trained to respond and diffuse situations that are stressful. Above all, memory care staff will be respectful and compassionate to the residents. 

Memory care staff will be trained in various techniques like validation therapy which can help them accept various beliefs of residents without contradiction, which can help avoid unnecessary stress. 

Carefully Planned Building Designs 

Much care and planning go into designing a memory care residence. As the safety of residents is of foremost importance, these buildings will have features to prevent the residents of the facility from wandering outside without making them feel that they are imprisoned. In the case of some memory care facilities, the residents will have access to the outside via enclosed courtyards. In addition, the buildings will be easy to navigate and the hallways will be color coded to make navigation comfortable for the residents. 

In some assisted living communities, residents will be allowed to display mementos or photos outside their room which can help them recognize their rooms more easily. Lighting is also used as a sign to help residents get an idea about the time of day. Also, these buildings can have larger windows to ensure that the residents are exposed to natural light, which might help reduce the symptoms of dementia. 

Thoughtfully Prepared Meals 

Ensuring proper nutrition can be a very big challenge for people suffering from dementia disorders as they can suffer from eating problems, reduced taste and smell, etc. Therefore, memory care staff will pay special attention to meal preparation to encourage residents to eat healthily. Some of the facilities use ground ingredients to ensure that swallowing is easier for the residents and some prepare food in bite-size offerings to avoid the use of spoons and forks that many dementia patients are not able to use. 

Also, food can be placed in colorful and attractive dishes to make meals more interesting and also to make it easy for elderly adults to distinguish food items. 

Consistent Schedules 

Elderly adults with Alzheimer’s need to follow a schedule that is consistent, as routine changes can lead to confusion and anxiety. A general daily structure will be provided in memory care communities and the staff will strive to keep activities like bathing, mealtime, etc as regular as possible to avoid issues like disorientation and stress. 

Regular Activities 

A wide range of activities will be scheduled in most of the memory care communities and some of these activities will be designed to help residents decrease their stress and improve their memory. Usually, small group activities are common as large gatherings might trigger anxiety and confusion in people suffering from dementia disorders.

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