How to Know When It’s Time for Memory Care

Every time you arrive at your parent’s home, you’re not sure what to expect.

You’ve been concerned, a worry that has mounted ever since they asked you how to get to the grocery store—a place they frequented several times a week for many years. You’ve found that your parent often asks you for directions to places they are very familiar with and should know how to get to.

Then you see the stack of bills on the dining room table labeled “past due.”

No one wants to be in this scenario, but it’s the case for millions of Americans whose children and grandchildren want to know when it’s time to place those they love in a memory care or assisted living facility.

We understand these are difficult conversations to have, but often, it’s vital to have them for the safety of those you love. We want you to know that there is no reason for you to feel guilty; our memory care center treats those precious to you with the same care and consideration that we would give members of our own family.

Not sure if the time is right for memory care or assisted living? Following is some information that can help you make up your mind:

Questions You Should Ask to Determine When It’s Time for Memory Care

Is Your Loved One Safe?

This is the most important question you should ask. Those with Alzheimer’s and other dementias may be unable to easily participate in the activities of daily living—this means they may leave the stove on or leave doors unlocked. As Alzheimer’s advances, it can have physical effects on the body as well,  such as problems with coordination, difficulty walking and balance issues.

These set the stage for a terrible fall, and as your parents age, there’s also a greater risk of them breaking a hip.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, every year more than 300,000 people age 65 and older are hospitalized of hip fractures, and 95% of those fractures are caused by falling.

Does Your Loved One Often Forget to Pay Bills?

First, let’s be clear: There’s a difference between dementia/Alzheimer’s and forgetfulness.  Everyone is forgetful now and then, and anyone can easily let a bill slip through the cracks occasionally.

However, when this becomes a regular, continuing pattern of behavior, it’s a good indicator that it may not be healthy for them to be living by themselves, and perhaps additional assistance is needed.

Are They Showing Signs of Dementia/Alzheimer’s?

First, let’s make a distinction. Dementia is a classification of diseases; Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia.

As we mentioned before, anyone can be forgetful now and again, but if your family member exhibits these signs, we encourage you to take them to a physician for an evaluation:

  • Memory loss
  • Consistently poor judgement
  • Taking longer to complete routine tasks of everyday living
  • Consistently repeating questions
  • Difficulty handling money
  • Getting lost
  • Wandering
  • Personality changes
  • Moodiness
  • Increased anxiety
  • Aggression

Again, we want to be clear that, at some point, everyone is prone to some of these symptoms—everyone goes through periods of anxiety and some people are able to handle money better than others. The difference manifests itself when the symptoms make it nearly impossible for the person to function normally and handle tasks of daily living.

Are They Keeping up With Daily Hygiene?

Those with dementia frequently fail to bathe or change clothes simply because they forget. They may also have difficulty in styling hair, and in extreme cases, they may even develop elderly incontinence.

Coastal Pointe’s Memory Care Facility: A Safe Place for Your Loved One

We know you’re probably struggling with the decision to place your loved one in memory care.

And that’s okay. We understand.

It’s a big step that represents a complete change in lifestyle, and it is not a decision to take lightly.

That’s why we want to give you all the information you need so you can make an informed choice that will safeguard the daily life of your loved one. Our memory care center employees have received extensive training in helping those with dementia or Alzheimer’s, and they help us maintain an environment that is both stimulating and safe.

Won’t you ask us for more information? Isn’t it time you were able to step away from your role as primary caregiver so you can return to your role as son, daughter or spouse?

Contact us today or sign up for a virtual tour.