Dementia care: the benefits of moving into specialized facility
Dementia is a progressive condition and, as the condition gradually worsens over time. The person affected by it will require more care, which can be too much for family and community-based services to provide. At this time, a move to a residential home that provides dementia care could be the right move.
In the US, there are thought to be more than 5 million people affected by dementia, according to Braintest.com. As the population expands and life expectancy increases, this number is likely to increase in the years to come.
Dementia is something of a catch-all term for a range of conditions that affect memory and cognitive ability, including Alzheimer’s – the most common form of dementia – and vascular dementia.
However, all forms of dementia are degenerative, which means the person with the condition will require progressively higher levels of care as it worsens over time. This will include personal care, such as washing and eating as well as more specialized care to address the symptoms of the dementia.
When the time comes that a person cannot safely live in their own or family home anymore, then a move into a care home with dementia care specialist is an answer.
Some care homes and assisted living facilities do not offer dementia care – focusing more on personal and physical care. These may not be right for someone who has dementia to move into, as their particular requirements may not be given the attention they need as the staff may not have been given specific training in dementia care.
Thought has to be given to the size of the care home too. Living in a small family care facility – under 10 residents – can be an advantage. With a regular, small team of staff, individuals will get to know the people providing their care well. This is something that Bright Horizon has – with only a maximum of six residents at a time, it is a close-knit team.
In a larger assisted living facilities – some cater for hundreds of people – then care can be more impersonal and those with dementia may not get to know them as quickly. For people with dementia, stability and routine is often a key to helping them to maintain their wellbeing.
Another advantage of specialist dementia care is that the home is equipped to deal with ‘wandering’. One aspect of dementia that can be particularly distressing is when a person ‘wanders’ – where they leave their home with the intent of walking to a destination but can end up getting lost and/or putting themselves in danger. But at Bright Horizon there is wandering prevention measures to ensure that residents cannot end up going off on their own. This means that relatives can have peace of mind that their loved one is safe at all times.
Paying for Dementia care
A space in a home that provides dementia care services can cost more than in a regular care home, given the increased level of care that is needed. However, long-term care insurance policies can help to pay for such costs. If a policy is in place, it can pay for care home costs and means that the person in the care home’s other assets aren’t depleted quickly. Long-term care insurance policies are growing in popularity in the US, but it is best to take out a policy before retirement age to avoid higher premiums.
Military veterans could also get assistance with long-term care costs through the VHA if they are enrolled on it.
Having payment sorted out, as well as the peace of mind of knowing your loved one is having their needs met with specialist dementia care in a residential care home such as Bright Horizon, where they can live the best life they can, for as long as possible, is immeasurable.