Home care is very similar to assisted living or residential care homes, but it occurs in the comfortable privacy of the patient’s own home. A nurse or other professional lives with or makes daily visits to the patient to help with bathing, dressing, chores, and other daily activities. The caretaker may also act as a simple companion for those dementia patients who prefer to remain independent in their own homes but need some social time and someone to check in on them.
Respite care refers to short-term care, often offered at an assisted living facility or nursing home. This type of program is designed to relieve the patient’s normal caregivers of their duties for a period of time from a week to a month, depending on the situation, so that the caregivers can take care of whatever other situations in their lives are demanding attention at the time. Respite care periods can also function as a trial run for patients who will eventually have to live in a residential facility; it allows them to try out a particular nursing home or assisted living facility for a short period of time before any decisions are made about more permanent arrangements.
Also known as convalescent care or long-term care facilities, nursing homes are meant for patients who require a high level of care. Staff members check in on patients often to provide medical care and help with simple activities like dressing and bathing. Many nursing homes offer short-term or long-term care and provide activities for their patients. Residents usually share a room and eat together in a dining hall if their health permits it. Some have a separate wing specifically for dementia patients.
Some residential facilities are designed specifically for people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. These homes have lots of structured activities, because many of their patients are still mobile and physically fit. They also provide round-the-clock support and locked or secured exits to keep patients from wandering off.
The good news is that if you try one of these residential options and you or your loved one doesn’t like it, you can always try something new. Or you might elect to start with an an independent living community but later switch to an assisted living facility as the need for care progresses. Some facilities even offer more services depending on the level of care required, so your loved one may not even have to change residences to get increased care!Whizzco