A dementia community can provide your aging parent a safe place to live and socialize, especially if their dementia or Alzheimer’s has progressed.
The process of transitioning a loved one to senior care takes time and patience, and can leave you emotionally exhausted, but creating a strategy to ease the transition can help everyone involved.
Signs It’s Time to Transition to a Dementia Community
Here are some situations that may indicate it’s time to transition to dementia care:
- Mom’s home is frequently disorganized or dirty.
- Dad’s appearance is more unkempt, and his hygiene is lacking.
- Bills are regularly going unpaid each month, and late notices have begun to pile up.
- Your parent is forgetting to follow doctor-prescribed healthcare routines, and not taking medication.
- The neighbors have reported your parent is wandering outside regularly.
- Your parent is becoming socially withdrawn, isolating from family and friends.
- Mom is confusing names, dates and locations more often.
- Dad has had several falls within the last year, and you’re worried he may break a bone.
Have a Discussion
The first step toward a successful transition to dementia care is having an honest conversation with your senior loved one about your concerns. It’s important to express yourself, but you should also give mom or dad the chance to discuss any apprehensions about moving too.
What are your loved one’s fears about moving to dementia care? What can you do to help ease their transition? You may also want to talk with other family members and friends to address their roles in the process and create a well-connected support system.
Searching for the Right Community
Finding a dementia care community that meets your parent’s needs may take time. Schedule a tour of potential facilities, but don’t hesitate to make spontaneous follow-up visits. That can help you get a realistic feel for a community’s atmosphere, daily activities and staff interactions.
Bring your loved one on tours and listen to their input. Ask them about the features and amenities they’d like to have in their new living environment and discuss any red flags they notice.
Here are some other things to consider when searching for a dementia care community:
- The level of care your loved one requires
- Family access and visitation
- Cost of living and other financial commitments
- Medical services and clinical capabilities
- Staff experience
- Nutrition and meal options
- Apartment floor plans
- Activity schedules
- Therapy and wellness programs
- Security features
Emotional Impact of Transition
Your parent may feel emotionally overwhelmed by the idea of transitioning to dementia care. While having conversations is essential, giving your mom or dad time to process this life change is necessary.
Seniors may feel scared, apprehensive or angry about changing their lifestyle. Allow them to express their emotions, and don’t disregard their feelings. Explaining your concern for their health and safety may help them understand why you want to begin the transition.
Kemper House Worthington offers Alzheimer’s and dementia care, respite stays, adult daycare and long-term services to suit your loved one’s unique needs. Contact us to schedule an in-person tour or take a virtual tour today.