Memory care can be a godsend for individuals with cognitive impairment stemming from Alzheimer’s disease, other types of dementia, Parkinson’s disease, stroke or brain injuries. Like with any progressive condition, dementia care and Alzheimer’s care can become overwhelming very quickly for caregivers and family members. For some affected individuals in the middle and late stages of these diseases, placement in a facility with regular monitoring and daily activities is the only way they can achieve a high quality of life and receive the intensive level of care they require.
Search the AgingCare.com Memory Care Directory and have a Care Advisor assist your family with making arrangements. This service is provided free of charge.
To speak with a Care Advisor, call (888) 848-5698.
A memory unit can be a standalone facility or a secured part of an assisted living community, continuing care community, or nursing home. This care setting is ideal for individuals with memory problems who need specialized physical, social and daily care. Memory care communities also feature security measures that safely prevent patients from wandering outside or off the premises unattended.
For the most part the following services are offered, but this can vary from community to community. Be sure to ask about all available options when touring.
|Room and Housing|
Studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments are available.
Options include room service, restaurant-style dining and accommodations for special diets.
Staff will typically handle responsibilities such as housekeeping and laundry.
|Assistance with ADLs|
Eating, bathing, dressing, medication management, diabetes management, incontinence care and personal care are provided.
Includes medication management, psychiatric care, pharmacy, physical therapy and hospice care.
May include classes for stretching, breathing techniques, chair yoga, tai chi, gardening and dancing.
Common options may include arts and crafts, poetry reading, musical entertainment, and provision of adaptive computer technology that can stimulate cognition and learning with things like audiobooks and games.
May accept cats and/or dogs.
Available for appointments and scheduled outings.
Staff are available 24 hours per day.
Family and friends can attend meals or stay overnight.
Secured areas allow residents to move throughout the facility while eliminating their risk of wandering off.
Families typically pay for board and services in a memory unit with private funds. Medicare does not cover long-term care, but Medicaid can be used to pay for costs at communities that are certified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Keep in mind that the expenses for specialized board and care of a dementia patient may be higher compared to assisted living, but memory care is less costly than nursing home placement.
Most communities charge a monthly rate that includes costs for rent, basic services like meals and housekeeping, and utilities. As your loved one ages and their condition progresses, these costs may rise as they require increasing amounts of assistance. Their needs should be documented in an official care plan and evaluated quarterly or annually by staff.
Selecting a new care environment for a loved one can be difficult, but cognitive issues can complicate this transition even further. It is important to conduct thorough research on potential communities, look through inspection records, and check consumer ratings and reviews. Once you have narrowed down your options, schedule a tour for each one to get a firsthand look at the quality of the facility, the way it functions, and how staff and residents interact. Make a point of conversing with employees and current residents to ask them about their experiences.Questions to ask when touring and researching memory care communities
Learn more about Alzheimer’s, Dementia and Memory Care from elder care experts, experienced caregivers and Alzheimer’s patients.