What are the signs of a resident needing to move from assisted living to memory care?

  1. Molly Dworken 10/16/2012 05:33PM

    One of the most difficult decisions an older adult or their family members must make is determining what level of residential care is best for their health and safety. Choices in senior living communities include independent living, assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing facilities, each designed to offer very distinctive care levels to meet the needs of their residents. People usually move to an assisted living community because staying in and maintaining their own home or an independent living residence is no longer meeting their needs.

    An assisted living community offers levels of care for each resident's overall health and assistance requirements. Some simply need help with managing medication or transportation to doctor's appointment, others more assistance with activities of dialing living (ADL), like dressing. But there may come a time when memory impairment and cognitive decline require more care than assisted living is able to offer. Below are signs that a senior may need memory care:

    • Is he more dependent on help with ADLs?
    • Are you noticing more problems with memory, including family members' names and recognizing faces? Are there other cognitive problems like forgetting words for things?
    • Is the senior showing odd behavior like agitation, making inappropriate remarks or becoming suspicious of people, medications, or food?
    • Do you notice rapid or unexplainable mood changes, depression, or agitation?

    If you notice any of the above changes, it's best to alert staff at the assisted living facility and have the senior evaluated by their doctor. They will be able to help you make an informed decision that's best for the resident.