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If your elderly parent has Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia and requires 24-hour care, you may want to investigate memory care or nursing home care. While both of these long-term care alternatives benefit seniors who have memory loss, they are very different.
Learn about the benefits, services, and expenses of memory care and nursing homes so that you can make an informed decision when the time comes for your loved one to seek elder care.
What is the distinction between memory care facilities and nursing homes?
Memory care facilities and nursing homes provide 24-hour supervision, care, and meals. Additionally, staff personnel assists with daily living activities (ADLs), such as bathing, clothing, and medication management. However, memory care — commonly referred to as Alzheimer’s care — is a specialty that focuses on caring for those who have memory loss. This style of care focuses on improving the quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia in a safe setting that prevents wandering and minimizes confusion.
Nursing homes, also known as skilled nursing facilities or convalescent homes, give care and medical help to elderly residents who cannot care for themselves. Nursing home residents do not require hospital treatment, yet they cannot care for themselves or live independently. They may be bedridden, wheelchair-bound, or need daily nursing care. You can contact memory care near me.
What to expect when it comes to memory care
Memory care is specialist care provided 24 hours a day for memory loss persons. Staff at memory care facilities undergo extensive dementia care training regularly to prevent and mitigate harmful dementia behaviors.
Memory care communities rely on experienced, professional staff to assist in preventing and alleviating dementia symptoms such as the following:
- Suffering from sunset syndrome
- Memory impairment or confusion
- Behavior that is aggressive or confrontational
- Memory-enhancing activities, therapies, and programs offered at memory care facilities also help seniors with memory loss improve their quality of life. Among these one-of-a-kind services are the following:
- Therapeutic art
- Psychotherapy with music
- Therapy with animals
- Stimulation of the senses
- Therapy with light
- Therapy based on recollections
Is memory care considered long-term care
At memory care centers, safety is a top focus. These communities include security elements such as closed and alarm-equipped exit doors to deter straying. Numerous memory care facilities are also specifically intended to alleviate disorientation and assist seniors with memory loss in reorienting themselves. You should also know what is the difference between memory care and a nursing home.
Several layouts and design aspects in memory care facilities may include the following:
- Color-coded walls
- Clearly defined communal areas
- Gardens or courtyards that are enclosed
- Memory boxes containing personalized keepsakes are placed outside residents’ doors to guide them and help them feel at home.
- Keypad access for family members or staff
- What to Expect in Nursing Homes
Residents of nursing homes frequently have significant health problems or chronic diseases that require 24-hour care and supervision.
Nursing homes offer two distinct forms of care:
- Care in the short term. Nursing homes offer rehabilitation services to residents recovering from surgery, an acute injury, or illness.
- Care in the long term. Nursing facilities care for patients with cognitive problems, terminal illnesses, or chronic conditions long-term.
Along with daily living activities, nursing homes may provide medication administration, wound care, IV therapies, and respiratory therapy. Additionally, they may include rehabilitation therapies such as speech, occupational, and physical therapy. The nursing home compare tool provided by Medicare can assist you in locating extensive information about every Medicare- and Medicaid-certified nursing facility in the United States.
Before a resident can move into a nursing home, they must obtain a physician’s prescription and undergo a physical examination. Seniors may be eligible for nursing home care if they meet the following criteria:
- They require rehabilitation.
- They demand constant surveillance.
- They need assistance with daily tasks such as eating, bathing, and clothing.
- They need help with self-management of medical conditions and drugs.
- The requirements for nursing home accreditation vary by state. It is critical to verify with your state’s Medicaid or county government office to determine your state’s precise nursing home qualification standards.
Costs of memory care and nursing homes
The cost of memory care and nursing homes is determined by various factors, including location, shared space, and the sort of services given.
Cost of memory care. Memory care has a median monthly price of $5,250. It may, however, vary by neighborhood and location, ranging from $3,000 to $7,000 or more per month.
Cost of nursing home care. The cost of nursing home care varies by state and facility type (private or state-owned). According to the 2020 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, the typical monthly cost of a semi-private nursing home room in the United States is $7,756. The median monthly price of a private nursing home room in the United States is $8,821.
What factors should I consider while deciding between memory care and nursing home care?
Memory care is provided to individuals who have Alzheimer’s disease, other forms of dementia, or other conditions of memory loss. Individuals with severe memory loss who require 24-hour supervision and those with difficult-to-manage dementia symptoms, such as violent behaviors, can benefit from memory care institutions’ skilled and caring approach. These institutions’ specialized layouts, safety features, and memory-focused therapies all contribute to improving the quality of life for seniors who have memory loss. However, seniors who require 24-hour supervision and competent nursing care may benefit from nursing homes that offer rehabilitative therapies.
If you’re unsure which sort of care is appropriate for your loved one, consult with your family, your older loved one, their doctor, or a case manager to gain a better understanding of their care needs. A Place for Mom is also available to assist and provide a free consultation service that has helped hundreds of thousands of families locate senior housing for aging family members. To discuss your loved one’s needs and available care options in your region, contact a Senior Living Advisor.