How Do You Know If Your Loved One Needs Memory Care?

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Memory care is a type of specialized nursing care, often provided in assisted living facilities. Memory care facilities treat residents with cognitive problems stemming from dementia. Patients with late-stage Alzheimer's often benefit from memory care. Placing your loved one in a memory care facility is a big step, and you may be unsure if it's the right decision for your family. Here are three signs that suggest your loved one may benefit from memory care:

1. Your loved one is unhappy.

Living with dementia is difficult, and unfortunately, it tends to get worse over time. In the early stages of dementia, a person may simply be more forgetful than usual. As the symptoms progress, severe confusion can result. Many patients with dementia become fearful, agitated, and even angry. Depression is a common side effect of dementia.

There is no cure for dementia, but assisted memory care facilities do everything possible to make residents feel safe and calm. Precautions are taken to keep residents from wandering off, and practical daily assistance is provided. Memory care facilities adhere to strict routines that can make residents feel more in control of their lives. If your loved one is unhappy living at home, they may feel better once they're living in a memory care facility.

2. You feel stressed and overwhelmed.

Your loved one's needs are very important, but your well-being matters too. People who care for dementia patients can suffer from poor health. A lack of sleep and chronic stress can severely degrade the quality of your life. If you find yourself overwhelmed and unable to cope with the demands of caring for your loved one, sending them to a memory care facility can be a great relief. There is no shame in needing the help of professionals when caring for a sick loved one.

3. Your loved one's doctor believes it is a good choice.

Consulting a medical professional is always a wise choice, especially when making important decisions. Don't be afraid to ask for the input of your loved one's doctor. Doctors who work with dementia patients know a lot about the way dementia manifests. Based on their experience with your loved one, a doctor can advise you on the level of care they believe your loved one requires. Ask frank questions to get the specific answers you need. When you're unsure, a professional second opinion can shed light on an uncertain situation.