What to Remember when Looking for Memory Support for a Loved One

When looking for a safe, secure environment for a loved one with memory loss, remember to consider a senior living option where those with memory loss are provided customized, quality care with a coordinated routine.

“It’s amazing to watch how quickly new residents settle into our memory support residences,” said Plymouth Place CEO Jay Biere who has worked in senior living for more than 30 years. “They recognize that they are safe, are with people who care and connect with them and can enjoy activities that are engaging and healthy.”

When beginning your search, be ready to explain to the admissions professional at each community your loved one’s interests in the past and now, as well as an honest assessment of the prospective resident’s abilities to communicate and manage daily activities, like dressing and eating.  At Plymouth Place, we call this Connecting with Compassion.

When you are visiting, watch how staff and residents interact with each other.   Care partners that respect the individual needs and passions of each resident create an environment of dignity and success.   As staff gets to know the special likes of each resident, they can ensure the resident gets the lifestyle that fits their wants and needs.   Plymouth Place has put a piano in a resident area so a resident can continue to play after moving in.   We have regular visits from local pet therapy dogs and the “Baby Brigade” comes monthly for a playdate with our memory support residents.  To Comprehend and Communicate with the Resident, in addition to family and loved ones is paramount to the “getting to know you” process and helping the Resident to continue their best life at Plymouth Place.

Ask about activities that are available for groups, as well as individuals.   Ask to see the activities’ schedule for group events.  At Plymouth Place, memory residents have their own group programs and can attend music concerts and parties with residents from other levels of care with staff supervision.

Art Therapy can also offer important opportunities for people with dementia to unlock memories in a creative way.  Plymouth Place’s full-time art therapist does one-on-one projects with residents as well as group art projects.  In both cases, the activity allows residents to express themselves in a safe, engaging way.  We coordinate the care and the desires of every Resident to honor their life-long passions.

Look at the physical layout to ensure it is safe but allows some ability for freedom.   At Plymouth Place, resident suites surround a home-like setting with a living room, dining area, kitchen, and activity area for all to share.   The living area connects to a roof-top garden that is configured in a “figure-eight pattern” for walking as well as areas for visiting with families and outdoor activities, like gardening.

Ask about dining options.   Family is always welcome at Plymouth Place to share a meal with our residents.   Special diets, like low-sodium and vegetarian, should be available, as well as access to healthy snacks.   Many residents enjoy cooking demonstrations and tastings.

Once you’ve decided on the right home for your loved one, know that you are still an important part of the success of that person’s stay.   Staff and your loved one will welcome your active presence at care plan meetings, as well as a regular visitor.   Your love and support is important.