Brain disorders like Alzheimer’s, Dementia, etc. are progressive conditions. In these diseases, the patient’s health tends to deteriorate with time. Such patients need lots of care and attention. In the early stages of Dementia or other related disorders, patients might be able to live independently. In advanced stages of Dementia or Alzheimer’s, the patient might not be able to do basic routine tasks like bathing, changing clothes, etc. At this stage, the patient needs 24-hour attention. This is a time when you might have to take one of the most challenging steps, sending your loved one to a memory care facility.
We understand taking such a drastic step is not easy. It always comes to a fight between the heart and brain. You must be doing your best to take care of your loved ones. However, patients who have any mental illness have specific needs. Besides memory loss, patients might have delusions, disorientation, confusion, personality changes, and agitation. Memory care facilities are designed to meet the specialized physical, mental and emotional needs of such patients. The staff of these facilities works 24/7 to take care of your loved ones.
Numerous Catholic Assisted Living Communities have memory care facilities to take care of people who have Dementia, Alzheimer’s, or other brain-related disorders.
What are the indications that show that it’s time to shift your loved ones to a memory care center? Below we have mentioned some symptoms that can be considered as an indicator which shows that the time has come to put your loved one in a memory care facility.
1. Changes in Behavior
Many a time, people having Dementia or other brain-related diseases start behaving in a very different manner. For example, a person who’s very comfortable driving suddenly becomes nervous about driving. A very social person starts avoiding friends, relatives, or social gatherings.
An alarming sign can be when the sufferer forgets or get confused about how to carry out a daily routine task like tying shoelaces, bathing, etc. In addition to this, if the person remains anxious or agitated, then it indicates that the time for considering a memory care facility has arrived.
2. Decline in Hygiene
The decline in personal hygiene like missing regular baths, body odor, mismanaged hairs, wrinkled or unwashed clothes, etc. are also considered as vital signs which indicate that the time for transferring patient to memory care has come.
At memory care, specialized staff will be there to take care of the personal hygiene of the patient. They provide the needed assistance to the patient to carry out their basic routine hygiene tasks.
3. Caregiver stress
Taking care of Dementia patients is not easy. It is very challenging and a 24-hour job. With time the needs and requirements of the patient keep on increasing. In addition, the patient’s behavior also changes. They might become more anxious, confused, and agitated. Under such conditions, the chances of caregivers becoming stressed are very high.
As a caregiver, you might be able to control your emotions in front of the patient, but eventually, your stress, tiredness, and frustration do come out in one or another way. This can even result in depression and insomnia in the caregiver. If taking care of Dementia patients becomes too challenging to handle, then seeking professional help would be a better option.
4. Feeling Isolated & Lonely
People who have Alzheimer’s or Dementia might even go in isolation. Under such conditions, taking the patient out could be very difficult for the caregiver. Furthermore, the feeling of being lonely and isolated might result in depression in the patient. This could worsen the situation.
At memory care, the staff tries their best to engage the patient in various individual and group activities. These activities are designed according to the patient’s physical and mental health. Getting involved in numerous fun activities lowers the level of agitation and anxiety in the patients.
5. Decline in Physical Health
The decline in the physical health of the patient is a very crucial indication that they need more medical care and attention. Some of the signs that show a deterioration in physical health are:
· Rapid weight loss
· Change in posture
· Mobility related issues
· Incomprehensible injuries or bruises
Physical symptoms are easy to detect. Weight loss is an indication that the patient is not eating properly. Unexplainable cuts and bruises reflect that the patient might be facing mobility issues. In such cases, the patient has higher chances of getting injured outside as well as inside the house. When the patient’s safety becomes questionable, it is better to shift them to memory care.
6. Living Conditions are Subpar
If you find that the living condition of the Dementia patient has declined, then it’s an indication that they need attention and care. The patient stops taking care of the house. This is indicated by dirty dishes lying in the sink, empty refrigerator or a refrigerator filled with spoiled food items, an increase in unattended mails, and other household messes.
Memory care communities help Dementia patients in housekeeping and other home maintenance chores. They ensure that your loved one’s house remains neat, tidy, and hygienic.
7. Caregiver becomes exhausted
Taking care of a patient who has Alzheimer’s or Dementia can be both mentally and physically exhausting for the caregiver. To take care of their loved ones, caregivers even start ignoring their own health. The situation becomes more complicated if the caregiver also has a job to attend. This might result in complete exhaustion. To avoid such a condition, getting help from memory care is the right option. It will be beneficial for both the patient as well as the caregiver.
8. Negligence of finances
If the person suffering from Dementia lives alone, then keeping track of their mail is very crucial. Check for pending bills, late payment notice, etc. Negligence of finances increases the chances of the patient’s financial risk, and the patient might also become a victim of financial scams. It is better to communicate with the patient and shift them to memory care.
9. Concerns for Safety
If you are always worried about your loved one’s safety then, it’s the time to shift him/her to memory care. People suffering from Dementia might face problems in standing and moving around without help. Also, continuous sitting, lying down, or lack of movement can result in various health-related issues in Dementia patients. Also, getting lost and wandering is quite common among people who have Dementia. All these conditions raise the patient’s safety concerns. Hence, it is better to take help from memory care.