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Signs It’s Time to Consider Memory Care

Millions of Americans provide care for loved ones struggling with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia at home. While this can be an appropriate solution during the earlier stages of the disease, there will eventually come a time when professional intervention becomes necessary. Read on to find out about the signs it’s time to consider memory care for a senior with dementia.

Safety Issues

The top reason to consider a move to a memory care facility is that a senior is no longer safe at home. Even with live-in family caregivers, dementia can eventually cause problems that compromise safety, such as forgetting to turn the stove off or an inability to distinguish when it’s appropriate to let a stranger into the home.

Frequent falls can also pose a danger to a senior’s safety. Even with fail-safes in place, like carrying a cell phone to call for help in an emergency or using a wearable medical alert device, falls can be particularly dangerous for dementia patients left alone who might not remember how to call for help.

Memory Care

Social Withdrawal

The connection between social withdrawal and dementia is multifaceted. Seniors can withdraw from family and friends as their dementia worsens, but the increased isolation can also exacerbate their symptoms.

Family caregivers can’t stay home and spend time with their loved ones 24/7. Assisting with a move to a memory care center where socialization and activities are part of daily life can dramatically improve a senior’s quality of life.

Wandering Off

Some dementia patients, particularly those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, can develop a tendency to leave home and wander off, getting lost and sometimes finding themselves in bad situations. This problem is difficult to prevent at home.

Memory care facilities are staffed 24/7 and often have extra safety features in place to prevent residents from leaving without permission and someone to accompany them. Because these facilities are purpose-built, they maximize residents’ sense of freedom and independence without compromising their safety.

Caregiver Burnout

Unpaid family caregivers experience high rates of burnout. According to the CDC, nearly 60% of them rate their stress levels as high or very high, and around 40% suffer from clinical depression. If caregiving duties are taking a serious toll and causing family members to neglect their own needs, it’s time to consider memory care.

Caregivers should also know that some forms of advanced dementia can lead to aggressive behaviors. If a loved one is behaving violently or abusively, it’s always better to entrust their care to professionals who have training in how to manage these issues.

Get Help Now

If it’s no longer safe or reasonable to care for a loved one with dementia at home, the best thing to do is contact a local senior living facility with a dedicated memory care unit to schedule a tour. Don’t wait until the situation becomes worse. The further an Alzheimer’s patient’s dementia progresses, the more challenging it will be for them to move to a new environment. Call a local facility to discuss senior living options today.


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