Care options for dementia differ in terms of the cost and level of care provided. If your loved one is still in the early stages of the disease, talk to her about which care options for dementia she prefers. This will prevent you from having to assume the decision-making burden later on.
Home Care Options for Dementia
A number of professional care options for dementia are available to assist the patient and the caregiver. Adult day services offer scheduled group activities and an opportunity for your loved one to socialize with other people. These services also offer a few hours of respite to the caregiver. Home health care services offer in-home assistance. A nurse comes into your home to monitor your loved one’s condition and to help with daily activities, such as bathing and feeding.
Respite care services give you a break from dementia care. Someone comes to look after your loved one while you go out. In-home respite care is generally only for a few hours at a time but residential respite care is available for a few days to a few weeks. Your loved one spends his time at a hospital, nursing home or respite care facility, allowing you to take some time off or go on a vacation.
Assisted Living Dementia Care Facilities
Assisted living facilities are available for individuals who need assistance with daily living but do not require the constant care of a dementia nursing home. Assisted living allows your loved one to exercise her independence, but receive help with tasks that have become too difficult for her, such as cooking, housekeeping or managing her finances. These dementia care facilities also offer the chance for your loved one to enjoy regular social interaction with other residents.
Dementia Nursing Homes
During dementia’s final stages, your loved one requires round-the-clock care. A dementia nursing home can provide this level of care because the nursing staff is trained to care for patients with dementia.
Although many caregivers feel guilty placing their loved ones in a dementia nursing home, few caregivers can actually provide the level of medical care their loved one requires during dementia’s final stages. The nursing home staff can ensure that your loved one receives proper care, dignity, medical attention and nourishment.
Clinical Tools, Inc. (2010). Short- and long-term care and living options. Retrieved January 17, 2011, from http://www.dementiacarecentral.com/caregiverinfo/careoptions
Mayo Clinic Staff. (2011). Caregivers: In depth. Retrieved January 17, 2011, from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/caregivers/MY00395/TAB=indepth
U.S. National Institutes of Health—National Institute on Aging. (2009). Nursing homes: Making the right choice. Retrieved January 17, 2011, from http://www.nia.nih.gov/HealthInformation/Publications/nursinghomes.htm