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89 yr old dad with dementia living w me over 2 years. I cannot do it any longer. Not wandering, not mean, can eat, dress and bathe unassisted so far. Cannot find his words often, TV remote a challenge but sometimes doable. Cannot remember dates and time has no meaning. Sleeps through the night ok. Sometimes dreams seem reality until he is awake for a while. Can he still do assisted living? How do you know? Looked at memory care but residents seem to look blank...Dad not quote there yet. Help?

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Speaking from 10 years experience in assisted living in Illinois. It sounds like dad would be fine in assisted. They provide meals, snacks, housekeeping, laundry, medicine management and monitoring and have a full schedule of activities and events. It's apartment style living with help. Staff 24/7 for security and emergency response. (If this sounds like a marketing presentation, that was my job.) A good rule of thumb in most assisted is.......if he resident needs 2 hour toileting, or 2 people to assist with toileting on an ongoing basis or if they need "put" to bed every evening and gotten up and dressed every morning, this is more in line with skilled nursing. ALs aren't staffed for this. Make appointments for tours now. Get those ducks in a row now, not when you needed it yesterday. I think this would be a good fit for dad. Keep in mind, he may need a couple weeks to adjust, but he will enjoy it.
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It really pays to go and see the facility you are considering. The lock down Memory Care facility was not what I expected. While it had many great features, I realized that my cousin was better suited for the AL facility she is in now. At least for now. If she begins to wander, I will reconsider things.

The AL facility has residents of many levels. I was surprised that my cousin was one of the higher functioning residents. She is more relaxed there as she is not responsible for running her household and taking care of her meals. It's working out great. I hope it does for your dad.
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My dad lives in a high rise assisted living place that has 4 floors of assisted living and one floor that is a locked memory care unit. The folks that will wander are on that floor. Some of the folks that live on the other regular assisted living floors have short term memory issues. Perhaps you could see if there is such a facility near you, then you could figure out which type of care your dad needs.
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I think there are different terms for different areas. For example, here in St. Louis we have Independent Living which are apartments in a huge complex for the over 65 crowd.

Then we have Assisted Living which is a private apartment where there is no nursing but there are people that do your housekeeping, people to remind you of mealtimes, and who check on you once a day but no care is provided. This Assisted Living is usually attached to a nursing home.

Then there's skilled care which is a nursing home. Within that skilled care is a memory unit or just a memory care wing of the skilled care unit. In other areas of the country these 3 living situations may be called by different names.

If you think your dad can basically live on his own there's assisted living but his dementia is going to progress and he will eventually have to be moved again to the memory care unit of skilled care. How do you think he'd do alone?
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I would think that he could still do AL. Facilities vary a lot, so once you find some you like, learn what they offer and what their criteria are.

Wandering is not common in all forms of dementia. If your dad starts wandering then he must be somewhere they monitor security closely. Also if he had very disruptive behaviors he may need to be more closely monitored. But from your description I think you may be able to find a suitable ALF. Ideally the ALF would have a dementia wing, in case Dad's dementia moves in that direction.

This is a very difficult milestone to reach. I wish you every success in finding a suitable place for Dad.
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Your dad sounds a lot like my cousin. She's only 62 but has significant dementia. I got her settled into AL yesterday. I'm holding my breath. I don't know if it's going to be a good fit or not. She can function at what she should be doing, it's just she is very anxious about returning to her home and cat. (Can never happen.)

It sounds like you have visited Dementia units. I have spoken to a few and am going for a full tour of one this week. I want to have a couple lined up, if she does start wandering or is not adjusting to the AL.

My understanding is that the Dementia unit is more geared to structure and the AL is not. AL is also not a lock down unit, so residents can leave if they wish, though they do require the person sign out. While my cousin may want to go home, she probably couldn't get a cab to take her, because she doesn't know her address or phone number.

The state of NC also evaluates the level of care they think the person needs and for her AL was appropriate. You might check to find a place that will evaluate your dad based on his level right now.

I won't go with the Dementia unit, unless it's absolutely necessary, but I know that time will come. Please keep us posted or PM me. I want to know what happens.
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