Choosing a future living arrangement for a loved one or a friend is always a difficult decision. Factors like cost, location and services are part of an extensive checklist to find the best possible housing arrangement. For others, the decision-making process is much more intense. Should you choose assisted living or memory care for your loved one? Here’s a look at some of the differences of assisted living versus memory care.
Assisted Living Facilities
Simply put, assisted living facilities are perfect for senior citizens with few medical issues. Of course, problems can arise in the future, but for the time being assisted living may be the best choice for the healthy senior citizens. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease can be unfortunate and inevitable parts of life. Assisted living arrangements will provide activities and care to help stave off or limit the effects of Alzheimer’s and dementia. Most facilities will assist in basic daily functions, with senior citizens suffering from dememtia generally offered extra help performing these tasks.
Assisted living arrangements can vary based on whatever the prospective resident desires. Most will offer private and/or studio apartments, with 24-hour staff available for any assistance or guidance. This is the perfect living style for those who are mostly independent but will require help with some activities. One of things residents truly enjoy about assisted living facilities is the sense of community. Daily activities paired with large dining areas provide the perfect settings for socializing. Staying active and creating bonds with other residents is such an enriching experience for senior citizens. Transportation to and from medical appointments and social gatherings are generally provided at assisted living facilities.
Memory Care Units
Memory care units are available specifically for residents in need of more supervision and assistance. Memory care, often referred to as Alzheimer’s care units or special care units, are ideal for senior citizens with mental or physical issues. Memory care units can either exist within an assisted living facility or act as a stand-alone, in some cases. Just like assisted living arrangements, 24-hour staff will occupy the memory care units. Think of memory care units as the same as assisted living communities, just equipped with more care and medical supervision.
Much like assisted living offerings, a plethora of activities will be offered in memory care housing. These activities and games are utilized for mental stimulation. Slowing any signs of dementia is crucial when playing cards or listening to a musical act in these units. The chance to socialize in a group gathering is just another benefit for residents.
Assisted Living Or Memory Care?
So, now that you know the main differences between memory care and assisted living, which arrangement should you choose for your loved one? One important thing to consider, of course, will be overall cost. Location and living space will definitely add up the costs, but due to the extensive attention provided 24/7, memory care will be more expensive. On average in the United States, residents can expect to pay over $5,000 per month for memory care and around $4,000 per month for assisted living. While you simply want the best care for your loved ones, cost will undoubtedly play a role in the final decision. The possibility of eventually relocating from assisted living to memory care is very common. Consider both options and take tours before choosing a future living arrangement.