If you have a friend or relative with a memory impairment, you may already be considering a memory care community. Memory care communities help individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia get the support they need. Many adults with dementia start receiving that support at home, but when caregivers are unable to continue with full care at home, you might be considering a transition into memory care.
A memory care community has a full range of services designed to improve wellness in a supportive living environment. From leisure events to therapeutic programs and 24-hr support, memory care services help residents maximize their abilities and improve their quality of life. Most memory care communities include:
- Daily activity and health support services
- Amenities designed to enhance residents’ lifestyles
In this article, we’ll go into more detail on what’s included in a memory care community as well as why many adults and their families choose to make the transition.
Why Move Into a Memory Care Community?
Acting as a caregiver for your friend or family member is incredibly rewarding and can strengthen your relationship. But as memory impairments progress, you may find that providing the best level of care is a full-time role you can’t accomplish on your own.
Those with memory impairments need help with daily tasks and activities. They might need assistance with walking, eating or using the bathroom. They might wander and become confused. They may even develop hallucinations or show behavior that is more aggressive.
You shouldn’t feel guilty if you can no longer care for your relative in a home environment. The best place for any adult is somewhere that meets their needs. A memory care community is designed to do that while honoring their legacy and preserving their dignity. It’s also designed to help caregivers – who continue to be pivotal in residents’ lives – reduce their own stress levels with professional support. People move into memory care communities to:
- Get personalized services from trained memory care professionals
- Enjoy a more engaging environment with activities tailored to their abilities
- Improve overall wellness through physical, intellectual, spiritual and social activities
- Simplify finances and get all daily care needs met in one location
- Ease the burden on friends and family so they can enjoy more time together in activities versus care needs
What’s Included in Memory Care Communities?
Memory care communities provide for the vast majority of their residents’ daily needs. Aside from medical procedures and support, which is usually provided in a hospital, memory care communities include necessities and lifestyle enhancements including:
All memory care communities include housing, although living accommodations vary from community to community. A virtual orientation or in-person tour is a crucial part of the decision – it’s important to see what accommodations your friend or family member will have and whether the space will create a supportive and comforting new home.
You should know that some communities operate exclusively as memory care centers, whereas others have a separate building or wing devoted to memory care. You might find continuing care communities with independent living, assisted living and memory care at the same location. Other communities don’t offer independent living but provide both assisted living and memory care services.
Accommodations typically include private rooms or semi-private rooms where residents share a room with another resident. All rooms have an attached bathroom to ensure privacy and stress-free usage. Some communities also offer rooms with a small kitchenette.
Outside of individual rooms, you’re likely to see circular walkways, brightly lit, spacious halls and color-coded areas. All these features reduce stress in memory care residents and let them have the freedom to explore, connect with other residents and staff or simply enjoy time in comfortable common areas.
Memory care communities typically include daily meals, although meal plans may be different depending on the community you choose. The best communities offer restaurant-style dining with entrees that are served in a community dining room that brings residents together. If residents prefer privacy, they may also be able to have meals brought to their room.
Meals in memory care communities are also customized to individual needs. Many residents have dietary restrictions or medical needs that must be taken into account. When touring communities, make sure to tell staff about any dietary considerations. In most cases, they can accommodate and personalize meals so they’re delicious but meet all your relative’s needs.
A memory care community provides the services residents need for a comfortable and wellness-oriented lifestyle as part of the monthly charge.
What can you expect them to receive? Like accommodations and dining, services vary by community. In many cases, they also vary by resident, with support and services personalized to meet individual needs. In general, most communities offer the following services:
- 24-hour monitoring for health concerns
- Medication management
- Assistance with daily activities, including eating, grooming and personal care, among other tasks
- Room maintenance and repairs
- Laundry services
- Wellness programs
- Exam rooms and space for on-site doctor’s visits
Other services may extend beyond normal tasks. For example, The Cabana at Jensen Dunes offers a rehabilitation clinic on site for physical therapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy. Other services may also be available depending on the community, its staff and their areas of expertise.
While services make daily life easier, amenities are designed to improve comfort and enjoyment. Amenities are essential to creating an enriching environment and may include both additional services and facilities.
Some of the best memory care communities take a holistic approach to amenities, offering options that address four main wellness components—physical, spiritual, intellectual and social wellness. Here are the most common amenities in memory care communities.
- Planned leisure activities
- Beauty and barber services
- Fitness classes and programs
- Resources for family members
- Secure courtyard
- Art center
- Fitness room
- Music room
- Games room
- Gardening plots
Residents can take advantage of any amenities they’re interested in as frequently as they like, using them to plan their own leisure time in the ways they enjoy most.
Memory Care in Florida: The Cabana at Jensen Dunes
Perhaps your friend or relative has long called Florida home – or maybe they’d simply find the warmer climate more comfortable. Either way, if you’re looking for Florida memory care options, consider The Cabana at Jensen Dunes. The Cabana at Jensen Dunes is a memory care community as well as an assisted living neighborhood for adults who want some help, but don’t need specialized help with a memory impairment.
As a Valeo™ memory care community, we are known for our four-point wellness focus. Our skilled team members and dedicated volunteers treat everyone with respect and take steps to ensure all residents have what they need to pursue their goal lifestyle.
We offer memory care residences thagt include studios and one-bedroom apartments, each with full access to the community’s amenities and services. Each secure private residence, ranging from 360 to 475 square feet, offers a full bathroom, kitchenette, bright interior with heating and air conditioning unit, a dining table, sizeable bed and linen closet. Contact us to schedule a tour to see how The Cabana brings out vitality in memory care residents.