Monday 2 October 2017


Choosing between supportive living options for our elder loved ones can be confusing and overwhelming. Here, guest writer Becky Susko of explains all. Thanks, Becky!
When exploring long-term care options, two of the most frequently asked questions we hear is “What is the difference between regular long-term-care facilities versus memory care facilities?” and  “How should I choose which one of these facilities is best suited for my loved one’s needs?”. There are many factors to consider when making this decision.

First, let’s discuss the differences in the facilities and the services they provide:
Long –Term Care Facilities:
In short regular long-term care facilities are designed for individuals who are, for the most part independent and cognitively aware enough to take care of themselves in everyday self-care and can complete everyday tasks.  They may however require access now or in the near future to support systems to assist them in completing these everyday tasks.  Support systems may include but are not limited to services such as transportation, medication management, and physical assistance services that are designed to enable independence not detract from it.  While constant care is provided the need for 24 hour supervision may not be necessary but it is available if the resident feels they need it.
Memory Care Facilities:

Memory care facilities provide the same services found at long-term care facilities but are further specialized in their care and services to make life easier and more enjoyable for those afflicted with memory loss disorders. The staff members at memory care facilities are trained specifically on how to care for and respect individuals with dementia and Alzheimer’s. In fact the nurses on staff are trained specifically in ‘memory care’ nursing.
At memory care facilities 24 hour supervision and care is provided.  This again is not to prevent independence but rather provide the maximum access to assistance necessary that may be needed by the residents since the effects on memory that dementia and Alzheimer’s cause . They may no longer have the cognitive ability to care for themselves or complete everyday tasks therefore they require more care to ensure they maintain a great quality of life.
Memory care facilities even consider the layout of their facilities and adapt them specifically for those with memory impairment.  The physical features make the facility easier to navigate and are designed to decrease wandering behavior.
Second, when determining what facility type will be best for someone ask yourself this, “What type of care will best preserve my loved one’s quality of life?”
We all know that our memory can be affected as we age, so depending on where they are at currently and by assessing their current needs you very well can start with care provided at a long-term care facility then reassess later with current staff members to decide the next best fit which could very well be a memory care facility depending on the care needs. Just the same if memory loss or if disorders that cause memory loss drastically begin to decrease the quality of someone’s life, it may be time to consider a memory care facility directly.  Keep in mind that the overall goal is to preserve their current quality of life and independence.  
The decision to place a loved one in a long-term care facility or memory care facility  is never an easy one and coming to the realization that their independence or decreased ability to take care of themselves can be a tough one to come to terms with. Whether the realization is sparked from a physician recommendation based on diagnosis or from a self-assessment during a home visit.  Rest assured that there are plenty of resources out there that can help you through this journey. is one of those resources, not only does it provide all sorts of care reviews but it also can help you through this very tough process by providing one on one over the phone personalized help. You’ll be connected with someone who knows your area and who will not only listen to your concerns but help you assess current needs. They then will provide further direction to more information on care options that would be the best fit for you or your loved one. We at understand that there are so many care options to navigate during this emotional time and we want to be there to help.
If self-assessment is more your style or you are just starting to navigate these waters check out this helpful tool here:
Becky Susko Bio :

As someone who is very close to their grandparents and feels that family is a valuable part of an individual’s life, I recognized the importance the services of could be to the elderly and their loved ones.  I’ve been with for a year now in the business development department and am now transitioning into a content writing role as I set out to travel through South America.

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