3 Steps To Finding The Perfect Assisted Living Facility For Someone With Dementia

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Are you looking for assisted living for a loved one with dementia? When this time comes, it is important that they get the best possible care. Naturally, the quality of care varies considerably from facility to facility. Choosing an assisted living facility that provides excellent care on all levels is important to your peace of mind, as well as to the happiness of your loved one. Here are three steps to finding the perfect facility in your area.

1. Choose an Assisted Living Facility That Specializes in Memory Care

Not every assisted living senior care home is ideal for dementia patients. Plenty of facilities have special wings for residents with dementia. However, these wings are typically locked off from the rest of the facility, and the amount of training in dealing with dementia patients among the staff members varies considerably. What you really need is a place that specializes in memory care.

A memory care facility is one that only admits patients with dementia. They include patients on all ends of the dementia spectrum, including:

Staff here are trained to go into a dementia patient's world with them. There is little to no frustration among staff members because they know what to expect from their patients and how to handle them to get the best results.

The patients themselves are usually given more personal freedom in memory care facilities, and treated with respect as human beings. Your loved one will usually be much happier in a place that specializes in memory care than any other type of facility.

2. Look for a Place That Offers a Lot of Activities for Residents

People with dementia can get bored very easily when they are not being mentally stimulated. This leads to unhappiness and frustration on their part. This can lead to behavioral problems at home or in an assisted living facility. The best places for loved ones with dementia are assisted living facilities that offer a wide range of activities every day.

Memory care facilities naturally offer this high level of activity and opportunities for social interaction. Other facilities may offer this, too. However, you are less likely to find it in regular nursing home environments.

You want to find a facility that offers at least one group activity each day (if they offer two or more, that's even better). The activities will differ from day to day, and range from arts and crafts to movies to live entertainment (such as local choral groups or folk singers).

Activities must also always be optional for the resident, so they can opt out if they are feeling tired. Offering residents this kind of choice is important. The more stimulation your loved one is getting, the happier they will be.

3. Choose a Facility That Offers a Large Amount of Autonomy to Residents

Just because someone has dementia does not mean that they have lost all of their humanity. They still have needs, wants, desires, and feelings. Without some degree of autonomy, your loved one will likely experience increased unhappiness and frustration.

According to the Annals of Long-Term Care,The best facilities for dementia patients give them the freedom to do what they feel like doing in the moment, as long as it is not dangerous. For example, if the resident wants to wander the halls all night, that's okay. If they want a snack, there should be a kitchen staff on hand at all times to provide it.


These are all features of assisted living facilities that are proven to keep residents healthier and happier (often more than they would be at home) for as long as possible. Don't contribute to your loved one's more rapid decline by putting them somewhere where they will not be getting the level of care they need. Click here for more information and look for these features, along with a caring staff. When it comes to choosing a facility for your loved one, think of the type of place where you would want to be if you were in their shoes. That's the best rule of thumb of all.