One of the most difficult decisions an adult child ever has to make is having to place their parent with Alzheimer’s in someone else’s care. A San Diego Alzheimer’s assisted living facility can help to make that decision an easier one. The focus on caring for Alzheimer’s patients ensures your parent will get the right type and level of care for their needs.
Sometimes a spouse may be faced with making a similar decision. Couples who grow old together feel obligated to take care of one another no matter what happens. The problem is that Alzheimer’s typically occurs in seniors. A spouse with diminished physical and mental abilities is unable to provide the quality of care their loved one needs.
The first issue to deal with when it’s time to place a loved one into an assisted living facility is overcoming the guilt. It is normal to feel guilty about passing the care of a loved one onto someone else, but it is almost always the best decision for the patient.
Few people have the time or physical strength needed to provide the kind of care that an advanced Alzheimer’s patient needs. In fact, more than one-third of the people who provide care to a loved one with Alzheimer’s have experienced a decline in health due to their responsibilities.
Once your loved one’s condition has progressed to the point that they can’t take care of themselves and you are unable to do so effectively, putting them into a San Diego Alzheimer’s Assisted living home is the best choice you can make for them. From there you will need to began the process of choosing the correct facility. Do your research and make sure you come prepared to conduct due diligence and ask the right questions during your visits.
What Alzheimer’s Is and Isn’t
Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that worsens over time. It is not simply a normal part of aging and, despite advances in treatment, the disease is not curable. There are currently over five million people with the disease and the number is growing. Experts predict that the number of cases could more than triple by the year 2050. This means that a growing number of people will have to make the decision about how they will provide care to their loved ones.
A cruel fact of life is that by the time our parents are older and have special needs, we have other responsibilities that limit what we can do for them. The symptoms of the disease are often mild in the beginning and progress slowly over time. You may start to notice your loved one forgetting things that they never would have before, such as a birthday or an appointment. During this initial phase, they are usually able to care for themselves even if they live alone. Family members who live outside the home probably won’t recognize the symptoms in the early phases.
Memory loss in Alzheimer’s patients progresses backward. The first memories to go are those that are the most recent. The person may not recognize their spouse or their own children during later stages. It is usually between these two extremes that family members begin to notice the changes in behavior. The need to place them in Alzheimer’s assisted living often becomes apparent once their condition makes it dangerous for them to be unsupervised.
Why a Nursing Home or Senior Assisted Living Isn’t the Same
Nursing homes are designed to provide care for people of all ages who are no longer able to care for themselves. Many of the seniors in a nursing home are either bedridden or have limited mobility. Those in traditional assisted living facilities may still be able to do some things for themselves but need a little help with others.
Alzheimer’s assisted living focuses on providing patients with the disease with the type of care that will improve their quality of life. Activities like Reminiscence Therapy are valuable tools for restoring a sense of self and identity. Music and craft therapies can help to evoke buried memories, encourage self-expression, and aid in dexterity.
All Alzheimer’s patients are not the same and they don’t respond to the same routines or treatments. Some patients may have difficulty speaking or stop talking altogether. Vision problems may cause problems with reading or telling colors apart. Some patients begin to lose things and there may be changes in their moods and personality. Some become introverted and stop socializing with other people while others begin to act out and become more aggressive. By choosing a facility that focuses on the needs of Alzheimer’s patients, you can rest assured that these individual symptoms and changes will be considered.
Some Alzheimer’s patients begin to wander off and must be monitored to keep them on the grounds and safe. One of the most important features to look for in a facility for your loved one is their ability to provide a safe and secure environment where there is no danger that they will wander off.
Caring for Alzheimer’s patients goes beyond providing for their basic needs. The best care includes different types of activities that are structured to the patient’s established lifestyle and their individual needs. Every Alzheimer’s patient has the right to the best care to preserve their identity and keep their memories for as long as possible. You have the right to have peace of mind that your loved one is in a safe and secure environment, getting the best possible care.
If you are wrestling with the decision to place your loved one into Alzheimer’s assisted living, ask yourself the following question: Am I able to devote the time and skill needed to give my loved one the same level of care that an Alzheimer’s focused assisted living facility will provide? If the answer is no, now is the time to start researching your options.
Contact Lakeside Manor today and schedule a live tour of our assisted living facility for Alzheimer’s patients. Be sure to bring a list of questions you need to be answered to ensure we are the best choice for your loved one’s care. We are confident that we have all the answers to put your mind at ease and to help make your decision one that you can feel good about.