Care for the Caregiver: The Benefits of a Memory Care Community

Providing care for loved ones living with dementia is a significant responsibility. When caregivers are also spouses or older adults, it’s not uncommon for their own physical or mental health to decline.   

Memory care offers many advantages, but the primary caregiver’s own decreased capability may precede the decision to move into a community. Whether it’s the development of a chronic condition or the exhaustion that can occur from around-the-clock attention, caregivers often need help and care themselves. 

Care for the Dementia Caregiver: Daily Anxiety

Everyone experiences stress, but living with daily anxiety can impact an individual’s physical and emotional health. While the familiar fight- or- flight response can be a helpful reaction at times, preventative steps should be taken if it persists.  

According to the National Council on Aging, there are a few common triggers for stress in the older adult: 

  • Chronic illness 
  • Caregiving responsibilities 
  • Loss and grief 
  • Loneliness or boredom 
  • Financial worries 
  • Major life changes 

Care for the Dementia Caregiver: Signs of Stress

Family and friends will want to be aware of not only the care and quality of life for the individual living with dementia, but also the caregiver. The following are a few noticeable signs that the caregiver is beginning to feel overwhelmed.  

  • Headaches 
  • Digestive issues 
  • Irritability 
  • Heart palpitations 
  • Sleep disturbances 
  • Poor concentration 
  • Crying 
  • Social withdrawal 

Care for the Dementia Caregiver: Finding Ways to Relieve Stress

While it’s important to note the impact that stress from caregiving can cause, there are also steps that can be taken to achieve relief.  

  1. Encourage open and honest discussions about the situation 
  2. Arrange for additional support, even if for only a few hours daily 
  3. Assist in providing healthy meals during the week 
  4. Help the caregiver get a good night’s sleep a few nights a week 
  5. Arrange for respite at a care community so the caregiver can tend to other responsibilities or take a well-earned vacation 
  6. Consider a memory care community for improved quality of life for the individual and the caregiver 

Care for the Dementia Caregiver: The Benefits of a Memory Care Community

Many families turn to a Memory Care or Memory Support community when the cognitive disease has progressed. Remaining at home may no longer be the best or safest choice—or the health of the caregiver may require attention. 

Understanding the advantages of a memory care community can make it easier for families to ensure that both the individual and the caregiver are supported in living their best lives. The benefits include: 

1. Special trained staff that are available around-the-clock 

Memory care staff receive special training in caring for and responding to residents living with cognitive impairment. Available 24/7, your loved one will have continuous access to assistance.  

2. A residence and community designed to provide a comfortable home environment 

Memory care communities carefully design the residences and common areas to promote orientation and to help the residents feel safe and at home. 

3. Support with daily tasks such as dressing, grooming and managing medications 

Staff also provide daily support for the residents and understand if there might be certain triggers to behaviors. 

4. Activities and therapies customized to fit your loved one’s needs 

Each individual can respond to dementia differently. You’ll find memory care communities tailor their programs and activities to meet a resident’s preferences and abilities. 

5. Healthy dining and environment encouraging nutrition and self-reliance 

Your loved one will be escorted to the dining room and will receive any assistance needed. Dinnerware and utensils are modified to support those living with dementia. Finger foods or other options may be included to promote self-reliance. 

6. Opportunities to interact socially with other residents 

Those who live with dementia at home may become isolated, but social interaction is still important. Memory care communities provide many opportunities to connect with the other residents and staff. 

7. Community and residence designed for safety and security 

Communities promote a resident’s freedom of movement between areas. You’ll discover secured outdoor courtyards that allow residents to go outside or back inside without feeling restricted. 

8. Support for the family and primary caregiver 

Dementia has a significant impact on the family as well as the individual. Memory care communities extend their support, provide suggestions and share information that can help everyone who is traveling this road. 

At Presbyterian Village North, we support both the individual and the family as they navigate the dementia journey.

We focus on the quality of life for our residents with a staff specially trained in the best practices of dementia care. Residents make their homes in private apartments while benefiting from the daily interactions with others and participating in our exercise, music, art and cognitive therapies.

We also provide the following services:

  • Chef-prepared cuisine—3 meals per day with varied, all-day dining options
  • Security system in all buildings ensures protection and safety
  • Secure entry/exit/windows in our Memory Support neighborhood
  • Secure Outdoor Patio in our Memory Support neighborhood
  • Safety checks every two hours as needed
  • Emergency call system with pendant
  • Escort assistance as needed to and from dining and activities
  • Convenient access to mobile healthcare services onsite including dental, podiatry, optometry, audiology, mobile x-ray and lab, and dietician
  • Full onsite pharmacy
  • 24/7 onsite licensed nurse

Presbyterian Village North is a compassionate resource for your loved one and your family. Please call 214-355-9015 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a personal visit to our community.