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Here's How to Choose the Right Memory Care Facility For Your Loved Ones

Updated: Apr 10

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Choosing a memory care facility for a loved one can be challenging and emotional. It's important to find a facility that provides the highest level of care and support for individuals with memory loss while meeting their unique preferences and needs.

From researching facilities to evaluating the staff, safety measures, and amenities, there are many factors to consider when making this important decision.

In this blog, we’ll explore the different types of memory care facilities. Then, we'll guide you through the process of researching, evaluating, and ultimately choosing the best memory care facility for your loved one.

Whether you're just starting your search or are in the final stages of decision-making, we'll provide tips and advice to help you make an informed and confident choice.

Types of Memory Care Facilities

Several types of memory care facilities are available, each offering different levels of care and support. Understanding the differences between these types of facilities can help you determine which one may be the best fit for your loved one.

  1. Standalone Memory Care Facilities: These facilities are designed specifically for individuals with memory loss and provide specialized care and support. They typically offer a secure environment with staff trained in dementia care.

  2. Assisted Living with Memory Care: Assisted living communities often have a separate unit or wing for individuals with memory loss. These units provide specialized care and support while offering access to the amenities and services in the larger community.

  3. Skilled Nursing Facilities: Skilled nursing facilities provide higher care for individuals with advanced dementia or other medical needs. They offer 24-hour medical supervision, support, and specialized memory care services.

  4. Continuing Care Retirement Communities: Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) offer a range of care options, including independent living, assisted living, and memory care. This allows residents to transition to different levels of care as their needs change over time.

When choosing a memory care facility, consider which type of facility may best fit your loved one based on their unique needs and preferences.

Assess Your Loved One’s Needs

We understand that assessing your loved one's needs can be a difficult and emotional process. But it's an important step in finding the right memory care facility for them. Steps for assessing their needs include:

  1. What is their stage of memory loss? The first thing to consider is the stage of memory loss. Are they having trouble with short-term memory or experiencing more severe symptoms such as disorientation or confusion? This will help determine the level of care your loved person needs.

  2. What is their daily routine like? Another important factor to consider is your loved one's daily routine. Take note of their behavior, such as changes in appetite, sleep patterns, or mood swings. This can help you identify any triggers or patterns that may affect their daily life.

  3. What does their doctor think? Talking to their doctor about their condition and any medical concerns is also important. They may be able to guide you on how to best care for your loved one and what types of memory care facilities would be most suitable for their needs.

  4. What would your loved one prefer? Finally, consider your loved one's preferences. Do they have any hobbies or interests that can be incorporated into their daily routine? What are their social and emotional needs? These factors can help you choose a memory care facility to provide your loved one with a comfortable and fulfilling living environment.

Remember, assessing your loved one's needs requires patience, empathy, and understanding. Take the time to observe their behavior, talk to their doctor, and consider their preferences. This will help you find a memory care facility that will provide them with the best possible care and quality of life.

Research Memory Care Facilities

When researching memory care facilities, there are a few important factors to consider.

  1. Find memory care facilities. To begin your research, using online resources like senior living directories and review websites is a good idea. These resources can help you identify memory care facilities in your area and provide information about their services, amenities, and costs.

  2. Visit a few different facilities. Once you've identified a few potential facilities, visiting them in person is important. Take note of the cleanliness and organization of the facility, as well as the staff's demeanor. Observe the residents and note their level of engagement in activities and socialization. It's also important to talk to current residents and their families if possible. They can provide you with firsthand knowledge of what it's like to live in the facility and give you a better understanding of the level of care provided.

  3. Learn about the staff’s training. Another important factor to consider is the staff's qualifications and training, which we’ll discuss in more detail in the next section. But at this stage, find out about the staff-to-resident ratio and the specific training programs the staff members have completed. This can give you a better understanding of the level of care provided and the staff's ability to handle any issues that may arise.

  4. Consider your price range. Lastly, consider the cost of the facility and whether it fits within your budget. Don't be afraid to ask about any fees or additional costs that may not be included in the initial price quote.

By researching these elements of a memory care facility, you are taking the first steps toward finding the right memory care facility for your loved one.

Evaluate Memory Care Facilities

Once you’ve researched memory care facilities, evaluating your choices in person is important. Here are some factors to consider.

  1. Staff Training and Qualifications: As we mentioned, it's essential to ask about the staff's training and qualifications, including whether they have specialized training in memory care. Ask the same questions again, and see if you can receive more detailed information than the internet provides.

  2. Safety and Security Measures: Look for safety and security measures such as secure entrances and exits, alarms on doors and windows, and 24/7 supervision. Ask about the facility's emergency response plan.

  3. Activities: Check out the facility's calendar of activities and events. Is there a variety of options that cater to different interests and abilities? Is there a focus on cognitive stimulation and social engagement?

  4. Amenities: Take note of the facility's amenities, such as common areas, outdoor spaces, and dining options. Are they clean and well-maintained? Do they meet your loved one's preferences and needs?

  5. Medical Care: Ask about the facility's medical care, including how medications are managed and whether there is an on-site nurse or doctor. How are medical emergencies handled, and how is the communication process with family members?

  6. Overall Atmosphere: Take note of the overall atmosphere of the facility. Is it welcoming and home-like? Do the residents seem happy and engaged? Are there any red flags or warning signs that make you uncomfortable?

Remember, evaluating a memory care facility requires thoroughness and attention to detail. Take the time to ask questions, observe the facility, and talk to staff members and residents. This will help you find a memory care facility that gives your loved one the care, support, and quality of life they deserve.

Making Your Final Decision

Making the final decision on a memory care facility for your loved one can be a difficult and emotional process. Here are some tips to help you make the best decision based on your loved one's preferences and comfort level:

  1. Review Your Notes: Review your notes and evaluate the pros and cons of each facility. Consider factors such as staff training and qualifications, safety and security measures, activities, amenities, and overall atmosphere.

  2. Listen to Your Loved One: Talk to your loved one and get their feedback on the facilities you visited. Consider their preferences and comfort level when making your final decision. Bring them along on a tour of the final facility options if possible.

  3. Consider the Location: Think about the facility's location and whether it's convenient for family members to visit. Also, consider any support services or resources available in the surrounding community.

  4. Look for Red Flags: Consider any red flags or warning signs you may have noticed during your visits. Trust your instincts; don't ignore any concerns you may have.

  5. Review Contracts and Pricing: Review the contracts and pricing for each facility carefully. Make sure you understand what is included in the price and any additional fees that may apply.

  6. Seek Advice: Consider seeking advice from a healthcare professional or a senior living advisor. They can provide additional insight and help you make an informed decision.

Remember, making the final decision on a memory care facility requires thoroughness and careful consideration. With these tips, you can find a memory care facility that provides your loved one with the best possible care, support, and quality of life.

Take a Tour of Cottage Glen

Finding the right memory care facility for a loved one is a crucial decision that requires careful consideration and a lot of research. By evaluating the staff, safety measures, amenities, and overall atmosphere of a facility, you can ensure that your loved one receives the best possible care and support.

If you're looking for a memory care facility in Tooele, Utah, we encourage you to tour Cottage Glen. Our experienced and compassionate staff provides personalized care and attention to each resident, ensuring their unique needs and preferences are met. Schedule a tour, and see why Cottage Glen is the perfect choice for your loved one.

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