How Being in a Memory Care Community Helps Slow Dementia
Brian SheridanJun 10th, 2022
It’s heartbreaking for families when an elderly loved one receives an Alzheimer’s disease or dementia diagnosis. They’re starting a journey where the older adult will progressively worsen over time. However, the speed of the progression often depends on the person’s living environment.
For example, an older person with early-stage dementia who sits at home watching the same television episodes repeatedly is muting their brainpower, making the condition worse.
In addition, our brains are exercised when we’re listening to someone or formulating what to say. Therefore, living alone, being isolated, and not socializing can also be detrimental to healthy brain function.
Poor nutrition at home can also hurt cognitive function. Quick ready-to-eat meals from the grocery store or delivered by a food service aren’t often made with the brain-boosting ingredients required to energize thought patterns.
In short, aging in place at home can risk dulling the brain and hasten dementia symptoms. However, many families prefer that their loved ones remain in the family home, supported by part-time home services to help support their cognitive needs. The problem is that the person will still be living in an environment of sensory deprivation, making this approach unsustainable when they need 24-hour care.
The answer to actually slowing down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia is placement into a Memory care community, where everything is designed for positive brain stimulation and optimal quality of life.
How does Memory Care slow down dementia?
Moving a loved one from the family home into Memory Care can seem overwhelming for the whole family. However, once the person has settled into their new lifestyle, many families report a noticeable change in the dementia condition. Their loved one seems more alert and engaged than they have since before their diagnosis. The person also appears to be thriving in the new setting more than they were at home.
In fact, some people have told me that their older relatives had reverted to where they were during the early stages of dementia.
These remarkable results are because everything in a Memory Care community is designed toward cognitive stimulation and brain exercise, such as:
It’s not beneficial for the person if they’re napping or in their unit watching television all day. That’s why Memory Care units are smaller and designed solely for sleeping in at night. During the waking hours, your loved one is out in the community, engaging with other people, and having stimulating two-way conversations that increase brain activity. The smaller units also allow for easy-to-read sightlines that prevent confusion when navigating the space, and feature security measures that ensure the person is always safe and accounted for, especially if there’s a risk of wandering.
Enhanced community design
The entire Memory Care community is designed specially for cognitive stimulation. Specific color patterns are used on the floors and walls to trigger brain activity. In the dining hall, you may see a blue table with a white plate or a white table with a darker plate to engage the brain. Even the food is served in a color-rich, visually-active way. Every design aspect of Memory Care is geared toward slowing the progress of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia no matter where the resident is in the community.
Brain-healthy menu choices
When you look at the food offered in Memory Care’s dining hall, you’ll notice that all meals feature brain-boosting choices scientifically proven to promote healthy brain function. The menu selections also emphasize nutrition to promote overall health and well-being.
Engaging activities that promote cognitive function
Activities that keep residents stimulated are core to Memory Care. Puzzles, games, music, and other brain-stimulating pursuits help slow down the progression of dementia while adding joy, fun, and laughter to the residents.
24-hour personalized care
It can be challenging to monitor your loved ones around the clock when they live at home. The lack of constant supervision makes assessing the progression of the disease difficult. In Memory Care, the staff is thoroughly trained and qualified to work with people with dementia. They support your loved one every day. If something seems off, it can be addressed right away.
Pleasantly stimulating scents
Aromatherapy plays a significant role in helping to stimulate Memory Care residents. Gentle scents can also promote a healthy sleep that properly rests and recharges the brain.
It’s important to stress that although Memory Care can slow down the effects of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, there is no cure for these conditions. However, slowing the progression will give us more precious time with our loved ones, creating more positive family visits and cherished memories.
No-cost help finding quality Memory Care in Northeast Florida
Many families find that navigating the world of senior living can be daunting and confusing, especially if they’re doing it alone or for the first time.
That’s why families looking for Assisted Living or Memory Care in Northeast Florida call Brian Sheridan of Assisted Living Locators. Brian and his team will take the time to get to know your elderly loved one’s needs, wants, and requirements and present a list of best-fit options that suit their lifestyle. With Brian on your side, you’ll have all the information you need to make the most informed decision possible.
Contact Brian at 904-559-3203 or firstname.lastname@example.org to find the Best Senior Living Community in Northeast Florida for you or a family member today!