The statistics on Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in the Lone Star state are staggering. 330,000 Texans live with Alzheimer’s. Texas ranks fourth in terms of the number of cases of AD across the country and second in the number of deaths caused by the disease each year.
The diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is one that impacts the entire family. As many of the Houston family caregivers we work with know, caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s isn’t easy. When safety becomes a concern or when the caregiver is totally overwhelmed, there are several types of specialized dementia care options available to help.
Three basic types:
- Home Care: In-home care may be an option if your loved one is in the early stages of AD. These providers can help with the activities of daily living such as personal care and meal preparation. Some can also provide assistance with medication management.
- Memory Care Assisted Living: A dementia care program in an assisted living community is often referred to as Memory Care. These programs offer the benefits of a traditional assisted living community with an added layer of support designed to meet the unique needs of people with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. The additional support includes: specialty staff, life enrichment activities that support memory loss, meal plans that work around the limitations the disease often creates and more. Safety is a major component of Memory Care. These secure communities utilize different types of technologies to prevent and detect wandering.
- Dementia Care in a Nursing Home: Some nursing homes offer a dedicated Memory Care program. Many residents of these programs are in the final stages of AD. They may have higher levels of disability and more complex health care needs.
Understand the Benefits of Memory Care
Area patients who have memory disease can benefit from the specialized care in a variety of ways including:
- Security: Safety is often a primary reason adult children begin to explore memory care programs. Because family caregivers can’t always be present around the clock to keep a loved one safe, the security of a memory care program can offer peace of mind. Build-in safety features include wandering systems, fire detection systems and 24/7 on site trained staff.
- Specialty Caregivers: Memory care providers typically have their own specialized training programs for caregivers who work with their memory residents. Staff members are trained on dementia- specific topics such as coping with Sundowner’s Syndrome, preventing or safely managing wandering and non-verbal communication skills.
- Life Enrichment Activities: Another advantage of a memory care program is the chance for people with Alzheimer’s to participate in life enrichment activities designed to support their abilities and protect their independence. Memory Care staff utilize reminiscence therapy, music therapy, pet therapy, art therapy and more to connect and engage with Alzheimer’s residents.
- Nutrition Programs: As Alzheimer’s disease advances, it becomes more difficult for people who live with the disease to manage mealtime on their own. Memory Care staff understand how to work around the challenges created by Alzheimer’s. Utilizing practices such as managing the meal time environment or by creating finger foods to make it easier to eat can help meet the resident’s daily nutritional needs.
Need Help Finding A Memory Care Program in Houston?
If the time is drawing near for you to find a Memory Care program for your loved one, please call us today at 832-993-1905. Our experienced team can help you find a community that best meets your loved one’s unique needs. We are independently owned and our services are no costs to senior or their families.