Choosing An Alzheimer's Care Facility

Life can turn upside down pretty quickly when a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. Sadly, one of the biggest factors of dealing with a family member's Alzheimer's diagnosis is learning to accept the fact that they will one day no longer be able to look after themselves and will need specialized care. Alzheimer's care facilities provide skilled nursing, around-the-clock monitoring and special accommodations for people who are living with dementia. Fortunately, taking the time to choose the best care facility will help ease the situation for everyone involved and prevent unnecessary anxiety. Here are some questions people should ask when looking at prospective care facilities:

 

Frequently Asked Questions ( 9 )   Add a Question

  1. What kind of care facility is this?
    Reply

    It is important to know that there are actually different types of care facilities, and the term "nursing home" only applies to one. In fact, nursing homes are meant for patients rather than the average resident-- those who require more constant care, and therefore this is a good option for those in more advanced stages of Alzheimer's. Assisted living facilities meanwhile cater to those who can still do a lot of day-to-day tasks by themselves but may require some help with basic chores and self care, making these places better for those in early stages of the disease. In the middle are continuum care facilities, where residents can move to different wings and gain more treatment and care as their needs increase with time.

    Best Answer
  2. How much experience do you have with Alzheimer's patients?
    Reply

    Not all care facilities are equal in their knowledge of and experience with Alzheimer's, and it is important that loved ones receive care from those who are qualified to give it. It is also worth noting that Alzheimer's and dementia are similar but not quite the same, and care facilities should be well informed on both.

    Best Answer
  3. Do you have a focus on memory care?
    Reply

    Even places experienced with Alzheimer's residents may not take regular strides to improve their mental condition. Those facilities that do focus on memory care specialize not just in medical treatment of the illness but also in improving the person's physical surroundings and daily activities to promote memory health.

    Best Answer
  4. Do you have onsite doctors?
    Reply

    Some facilities only have doctors that visit or they even shuttle their residents out to doctor appointments. Depending on how intensive a person's care needs to be, this can be detrimental or of little importance.

    Best Answer
  5. How much training does your staff go through?
    Reply

    Asking questions about the staff's training (particularly when it comes to Alzheimer's) should never be something people shy away from. This is important information for the well being of a loved one. Asking if staff members go through background checks isn't a bad idea either.

    Best Answer
  6. What activities or recreation do you offer?
    Reply

    Care facilities should never be focused solely on medical treatment. Good places will offer residents of all abilities a range of activities to keep them active and happy.

    Best Answer
  7. How much social interaction will my loved one have?
    Reply

    Even for those struggling with memory difficulties, social interaction is key to being as happy and healthy as possible. Nobody should hesitate to ask about how much interaction their loved one will have with other residents of the facility, including what kind of group activities are offered.

    Best Answer
  8. What are your visiting hours?
    Reply

    The good news is that, unlike hospitals, most places have pretty open visiting hours lasting most of the day. There are still rules, however, and this is important to ask about.

    Best Answer
  9. Do you offer hospice care?
    Reply

    While not a necessity, hospice brings great comfort to those in late stages of Alzheimer's. Even if a facility doesn't offer it (which many still don't), it is important that they are informed on it and/or can connect people with local hospice programs.

    Best Answer