Age creeps up slowly. There are no how-to manuals or check boxes for each milestone. When a family member starts displaying the telltale signs of age, such as increasing mobility issues, memory loss and dementia? It can seem completely out of the blue. Your entire family will be feeling the changes, from loved ones in denial that their life is changing out of their control to the individual in question terrified of becoming a burden on those they care about. In a tumultuous tide you need a beacon to light the way. Memory care programs are community-minded resources designed to help families make this journey together.
Retirement is a process many are aware of, but rarely prepared to deal with once it arrives on their doorstep. The average age of retirement in the United States is 63, with some proceeding a little earlier or a little later depending on their physical ability, security net and personal finances. Assisted and independent living facilities are more commonly used terms than ‘retirement home’, with different forms cropping up to attend unique needs. Memory care programs, for example, are designed with the express purpose of easing the difficulty that comes with debilitating conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
There are a lot of misconceptions concerning long-term care. In fact, some studies are even showing troubling perspectives when it comes to the natural aging process. According to a survey conducted by Age Wave, the majority of people vastly underestimate the likelihood they’ll require long-term care. While nearly 40% of people 50 years or older believe they will require the aid of an assisted living facility in the future, the reality is much closer to 70%. Fear is a major source of these misnomers, with Genworth Financial finding half of all respondents in a study reporting that being a burden on the family is an even greater fear than dying.
Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in the country. It’s scary to find out that someone you care for could be displaying telltale signs of this degenerative neural condition. A more intense form of dementia, Alzheimer’s is characterized by severe memory loss, impaired motor control, mood swings, mobility issues and difficulty verbalizing. It cannot be slowed, prevented or cured. Memory care programs are assisted living facilities staffed by experienced nurses ready to assist those suffering from the condition in minor and major ways.
It’s time to consider your options if a loved one has the possibility of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Assisted living residences are able to provide 24-hour supervision for those struggling to maintain independence. This includes providing three meals per day, personal care services, medication management, transportation arrangements, general housekeeping and counseling services. Day-to-day necessities, such as bathing and dressing, are also managed by an experienced and caring staff. What else can memory care programs do for your family?
Activities for assisted living facilities run the gamut of memory games to relaxing, personal hobbies. This is because an assisted living facility is a community, first and foremost. A recent survey by National Research saw 60% of independent living residents visiting two or more communities before choosing. Reputation and recommendation were the most dependable reasons for picking one facility over the other, with location following close behind. Nearly 90% of independent living residents rate their overall satisfaction as either ‘good’ or ‘excellent’.
When age comes knocking on your door, it helps to have the knowledge and resources required to answer with confidence. Look into memory care programs in your area and make this journey with your gaze firmly on the horizon.