Everyone forgets things here and there, but those living with dementia often find themselves struggling to remember more frequently than not. Dementia can strike anyone, and it’s most common in seniors. Luckily, moving into a memory care center in Washington can help loved ones learn how to cope with this life-changing diagnosis.
Cognitive impairments, including memory loss and confusion, are common. As the disease advances, some people find it difficult to continue living independently. With the right care, it’s possible to improve a person’s quality of life and, in some instances, slow progression. Here’s what to look for when choosing a memory care community:
A Well-Trained, Knowledgable Staff
Dementia patients require constant care. Some may try to wander away, and others might struggle with abrupt mood swings. It’s essential to find a center that properly trains its employees to handle any emergency that may arise. Before moving into a center, ask what type of training each worker receives. Verify there is a health care coordinator to monitor residents and make changes to their treatments as needed. Whenever a loved one enters a new facility, it’s crucial to know they will receive high-quality care around the clock.
Daily Living Supports
Memory care residents often need help completing certain tasks. Everyday chores, like laundry or tidying up, may become overwhelming for those with late-stage disease. Many facilities offer helpful services to improve a person’s quality of life. Even something as simple as helping a resident take their medication can make a world of difference in their daily care.
Regular Family Communication
A dementia patient’s health can change at any time. That’s why memory care centers should regularly keep in touch with family members. Having an open line of communication makes it easier for family members to advocate for their loved ones.
Multiple Room Options
Living in a community environment doesn’t have to feel like a college dorm experience. The best rooms should provide residents both privacy and a sense of belonging. While some people prefer to live with a roommate, others want a space that’s all their own. Find out if a facility offers both private and shared rooms, and inquire about any rate differences. In most instances, opting for a semi-private room can save families quite a bit of money each year.
Plenty of Resident Engagement
Every dementia patient has different abilities and limitations. That’s why the best communities offer a range of fun, engaging activities suitable for all residents. Appropriate events may include arts and crafts, music, game nights, or dancing. Before selecting a new community, be sure to find out what recreational or entertainment amenities they provide. Why is this important? One hour of social interaction each week can reduce agitation levels in dementia patients.
Scheduled Outdoor Time
Getting some fresh air and sun can help boost a person’s mood. It’s also the best way to get enough vitamin D. Look for memory care facilities that regularly take residents outdoors. Perhaps they have a private garden or access to a nearby park. Some centers may even schedule group outings. If so, find out if there is an additional fee involved.
Healthy and Plentiful Meal Options
Eating is something most people take for granted, but forgetting to eat is a common symptom of dementia. It’s critical to find a facility that provides residents with healthy, nutritious meals. Access to snacks and beverages between planned meals is another thing to consider. Ask in advance which meals the center offers, and find out if they cater to dietary requests, such as kosher, vegetarian, or diabetic-friendly meals.
A Clean, Well-Maintained Interior
How a facility presents itself directly relates to how the employees care for the residents. There’s nothing more unappealing than walking into a dirty residential center. Unmopped floors, smudged windows, and filthy bathrooms are huge red flags. Not only are these things visually unappealing, but they are also unsanitary. Consider popping in unexpectedly to see firsthand how the facility looks on a daily basis.
Advocate for the Best Memory Care
Pioneer Place Memory Haven provides individualized care for every patient who enters our Christian-based memory care facility. We are family-owned and operated. Since we first opened our doors in 1995, providing residents with top-notch, 24-hour care and a warm, inviting atmosphere has always been our mission.
Transitioning to a memory care facility in Washington should be a pleasant, enjoyable experience. From the moment a new resident moves in, they should feel at home. Touring and interviewing several centers will ensure you find the perfect match for you or your loved one.