What to Look for in a Memory Care Community

Caregiver handing coffee or tea to memory care resident

Moving a loved one with dementia into a memory care community is a big step. It’s natural to have misgivings about your decision, even as you recognize that your loved one will benefit from the specialized, round-the-clock care they’ll receive. Knowing that you’ve chosen the best possible memory care neighborhood can set your mind at ease. Our guide will help you choose a community with the expert care and dementia-friendly amenities that can help your loved one feel safe, engaged and contented. Here’s what to look for in a dementia care community:

Security Features

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 60% of people living with dementia will wander at least once and many wander repeatedly. Security features that prevent wandering are essential, as is supervision to make sure that the loss of judgment that can accompany dementia doesn’t lead to unsafe behaviors. Look for a memory care community with secured doors, alarm systems, 24-hour supervised care and gated outdoor areas where residents can safely enjoy spending time outside.

A Homelike, Simplified Layout

To help your loved one feel at home in their new community, choose a memory care neighborhood with a comfortable, cozy atmosphere where they can truly settle in, bringing mementos from home to personalize their private space. Also look for design features that help minimize confusion, such as a simplified floor plan or color-coded hallways.

Compassionate Staff Trained in Dementia Care

Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia can affect behavior, leading to agitation, verbal and physical aggression, paranoia, confusion, or resistance to care. Staff members who are trained in dementia care will be able to manage these behaviors safely. They’ll also understand the benefits of creating a calm environment with a predictable schedule to help prevent agitation and confusion. Plus, staff members will take the time to get to know residents and their families, ensuring that residents receive the personalized care that makes them feel comfortable and safe.

Enriching Activities

Activities geared toward people with dementia are engaging and provide a sense of purpose and self-esteem. Look for communities with an array of activities that will suit your loved one’s preferences, from puzzles and board games to supervised opportunities to exercise, craft, cook and go on excursions. An array of activities will provide your loved one with a satisfying sense of purposeful engagement and social activity.

Individualized Care Plans

You want a memory care community where your loved one is recognized as a unique person with ever-evolving needs. When touring communities, ask about personalized care plans. How are these plans developed? Do staff members work with families to create a plan tailored to each resident’s needs? If so, how are the lines of communication between family and staff maintained? Also find out how often residents’ care plans are evaluated. A regular assessment will ensure your loved one’s care plan evolves to fit their changing needs.  

A Person-Centered Approach to Memory Care

At the memory care community at Legacy Pointe at UCF, our progressive approach to dementia care is influenced by UCF’s Colleges of Medicine and Nursing. Here your loved one will find a comfortable setting and compassionate support by staff members trained in dementia care. Effective therapies create an enriching environment, while our emphasis on individualized care plans allows you to take an active role in shaping your loved one’s care. Contact us to learn more about memory care at Legacy Pointe at UCF or to schedule a tour.