Aging is an inevitable part of our lives, and for some, medical conditions like memory loss or dementia can pose a problem for living independently. Smaller instances of memory issues like forgetting to lock the door or leaving out food are common, minor mistakes, but for more aggressive forms of degenerative conditions, supplemental care may be necessary to support your loved ones as they live out the rest of their lives. Memory care facilities with adaptable, thoughtful care plans can help make this transition smooth, providing an environment that allows for simultaneous independence and constant, necessary care.
What Is Memory Care?
Memory care is a specialized form of senior care for those with memory loss or memory-related illnesses like dementia or Alzheimer’s. By creating a community focused on independence, memory care facilities provide opportunities for residents to feel in control of their lives through the freedom to choose activities while under the supervision of staff able to help them if need be. For example, facilities like recreation rooms and salons are available to memory care residents, allowing them to choose how they would like to spend their days by providing a wealth of daily activities for residents to choose from, all accompanied by staff trained to handle memory-related illnesses.
Although similar to other assisted living facilities, most commonly nursing homes, memory care facilities are centered around those with any cognitive-related illnesses, like dementia or Alzheimer’s, whereas nursing homes take in a variety of elderly residents with varying needs and health conditions. The design of a memory care center is focused on making life easier for those with cognitive-related illnesses, whether that be creating a sense of familiarity with staff or simulated living scenarios. These features specifically help residents feel independent while providing round-the-clock care.
Key Aspects of Memory Care Centers
No two memory care centers are the same, and finding the right match for your loved one’s needs is crucial for helping them create a new home. The main aspects of memory care that differentiate it from traditional residential homes or nursing facilities lie in the ability to encourage independence balanced with constant, discreet care that allows those suffering from cognitive-related illnesses to feel a sense of safety in a more unfamiliar space. Despite these differences, the biggest aspects of a functioning memory care center include:
- Security. Whether it be security from the outside or security through peace of mind, having a strong sense of dependability in your memory care center is important for its functionality. Memory loss and dementia can cause those suffering to forget crucial safety features, like turning off the stove or locking up for the night, which can cause greater safety issues like fires or break-ins if left unattended. Memory care centers are monitored by security cameras and expertly trained staff that can ensure these crucial aspects of daily life are attended to properly.
- Safety. As with different security features, having a center well-equipped to handle residents in various stages of their life is important to providing proper memory care. The nature of memory loss and memory-related diseases varies from condition to condition, and in some situations, the functionality of a person with these conditions can rapidly decline. Fortunately, memory care centers provide surveillance, emergency call systems, and resident alert systems to help prevent any major problems from occurring. Plus, with constant surveillance and trained staff, you can be sure that your loved ones are being handled with care and that their safety is a priority.
- Consistency. Memory care focus is making life comfortable for those with declining cognitive functionality, and one of the biggest areas of memory care comes from creating a trustworthy, reliable bond between patient and caregiver. By encouraging our staff to form connections with our residents, we ensure that your loved ones can build meaningful relationships with the people they see every day, creating a level of consistency needed to help residents feel safe. This sense of familiarity is helpful when administering care and helps those living with memory-related illnesses feel safe in their environment.
- Freedom. Providing all levels of care is vital for any memory care center; however, allowing residents to have the freedom to choose different activities or ways to spend their day is essential for maintaining a sense of independence throughout a difficult time. For any transitional move to a new living facility, the shock of the expectations that go along with this new facility can be hard to handle for some. Still, with access to amenities, new residents can maintain the independence they have living by themselves, without the safety risks that come with other living situations.
- Engagement. Typically, when thinking of residential living centers, encouraging activities is not one of the first ideas that come to mind. However, by providing an environment that encourages activities, residents can put their current skills to use. Between games, our activities, and social gatherings with other residents, being engaged and fostering an environment that helps promote cognitive functioning is extremely beneficial for anyone in memory care. For those with a pension for the outdoors, we allow our residents access to monitored outdoor facilities, helping provide the benefits of nature with the safety of our watchful staff.
Memory Care Suited for Your Loved Ones
Although the prospects of seeking out memory care for your loved ones can be stressful, finding the right facility with top-quality amenities, staff, and living arrangements is key to helping make the transition from independent living to residential living easier. By blending the freedom of choice in terms of activities and recreation time with constant, reliable care provided by a familiar staff, memory care facilities function as a way to encourage those with cognitive impairments to embrace their independence while providing necessary care.
At Rocky Mountain Assisted Living, our highly trained staff is here to provide comforting, meaningful care to the most important people in your life. For more information, including a list of our services and amenities, visit our website and schedule a consultation with our staff today.