3 Ways Assisted Living Helps Residents with Alzheimer’s
Taking care of a loved one who has dementia can be difficult, considering all the time and energy required to give proper and adequate attention. Fortunately, assisted living can help.
Living with Dementia: An Overview
According to the latest data gathered by the Alzheimer’s Association, it is estimated that 5.5 million Americans are living with dementia, of which 200,000 are under the age of 65; the remaining 5.3 million are 65 years old and older. With these numbers, one out of 10 seniors have this condition; as a result, there are more than 15 million Americans who are making an effort to care for a family member with dementia.
Memory loss is only one of the many symptoms of Alzheimer’s. When someone has dementia, he or she can become aggressive, can become incontinent, and can lose their way, among others. These signs and behavior can lead to safety concerns, warranting the need for constant supervision to avoid accidents and injuries.
Due to the progressive nature of the disease, Alzheimer’s dementia tends to get worse over time. There is also no cure. However, proper treatment and care can help slow the advancement of the stages, and can greatly improve the quality of life of the individuals who have the condition. If you have a family member who has dementia, you have several aged care options to choose from when the burden becomes unbearable on your own. If a nursing home is not an ideal choice, then consider selecting an assisted living facility for your loved one.
The Benefits of Assisted Living for Residents with Dementia
Here are the top three ways assisted living helps people with Alzheimer’s:
- Emphasis on non-medical aid
Generally, Alzheimer’s has three stages: mild, moderate, and severe. When the disease reaches middle- and late-stage, the affected individual will most likely face mental, emotional, and psychological difficulties, such as:
- Problems performing daily tasks
- Misplacing or losing valuables
- Trouble with planning and organization
- Moodiness and irritability
- Bladder control issues
- Major changes in sleep patterns
- Getting lost
These behavioral changes can drastically affect daily life. While nursing homes give more emphasis on medical care, assisted living focuses more on addressing the non-medical aspect of aged care, thus giving seniors with Alzheimer’s the help they need in planning and completing everyday tasks, such as bathing, laundry, dressing, and more.
- More autonomy and social interaction
The primary goal of assisted living is to offer aged care while giving residents more freedom than other facilities may provide. This allows seniors who have dementia to be able to regularly interact with others, and enjoy the things they love to do. Doing so can help them better maintain good mental health and cognitive functions due to the following reasons:
- Loneliness and cognitive decline are linked.
- Interaction provides mental stimulation.
- Having social support helps individuals stay independent.
- Self expression soothes feelings of frustration that come with the condition.
- Specialized memory care programs
There are many assisted living facilities that provide memory care programs for residents who are living with Alzheimer’s. These specialized programs are designed to address and meet the specific needs that come with the increasing severity and comorbidity of dementia. In addition to that, the staff are also highly trained for the job. By transferring residents from the regular population to the memory care department, seniors who have Alzheimer’s can receive the protection and care they need for their condition.
Assisted living services can be done in a facility or in-home, giving you the option to provide a more comfortable setting for your loved one. Geriatric care management services, including problem resolution, case management, and the like, can help improve the quality of life of seniors. To learn more about how we can assist your family member, contact us.