Thursday, May 18, 2017
Visiting a Memory Care Community
MorningStar Senior Living of Sparks emphatically agrees with the Alzheimer’s Association about the importance of visiting your loved one in a memory care community. While it can be hard to see your parent or family member struggling with memory loss, many times they are aware that they have a visitor even if they do not know your name.
The Alzheimer’s Association wants you to remember that you are an important link to your loved one’s identity and to keep in mind that there is more to them than just their memory. They recommend keeping visits simple and to try to limit distractions and excess noise. In addition they remind visitors that they may have to adjust their expectations and to not take it personally if your loved one becomes angry or upset with you. It is also helpful to know as much about the disease as you can as it will help you to better understand the struggles of memory loss.
Jolene Brackey also shares some tips from her book, Creating Moments of Joy for the Person with Alzheimer’s Disease, to help family members when visiting. She suggests you begin your visit by introducing yourself, and to use their given name rather than calling them “mom” or “dad” as they may have forgotten that their kids are already grown. If your loved one has a familiar nickname, you can use that.
Ms. Brackey also recommends that you visit “one on one” or in small groups, and to bring the conversation around to pleasant memories from their past. If you do get them talking, give them plenty of time to respond to a question or to follow directions.
MorningStar of Sparks reminds family members that a new voice is always a welcome change and a box of chocolates or a bouquet of flowers can lift the spirits of someone struggling with dementia. Your friendly, loving visit can have a positive effect on your loved one for the rest of the day.
MorningStar of Sparks’ unique mission statement “to honor, to serve, to invest” sets us apart from other senior communities. Committed to creating a true home for residents within a gorgeous setting, our foundation is built on honoring God, valuing our seniors and hiring staff with a felt calling to serve. We invite you to schedule a visit to learn more about our exceptional senior living.