Written by Hallie Salmen, Executive Director, Sunrise Retirement
The statistics look bleak: someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease every 66 seconds; at this time there is no cure, most people with Alzheimer’s are cared for by a family member and it often takes a toll on their health, too. So what can be done? Consider taking a positive step and consider becoming a member of a retirement campus that offers a full spectrum of living options and support systems to help you through the challenges of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis or other chronic disease related to age.
Becoming part of a community that offers different types of living choices like independent living, assisted living, and nursing care along with memory care specific living can benefit an individual in the early onset stages of the disease by acclimating them to a supportive environment. The benefits are even greater when one spouse needs more services than the other. Continuing Care Retirement Communities, as they are called, are able to provide services to their residents to help them remain independent in their homes as long as possible, and help them transition to higher levels of care when the time is right.
These communities usually provide wellness and activities services that benefit their residents, both in physical and mental wellness, keeping bodies strong and minds sharp and active. The presence of qualified staff on their campuses 24 hours a day give families and care givers comfort, knowing that if a need arises, their loved one will have help by their side without delay. The residents in these communities become friends and are there for each other – whether it’s for fun or comfort.
Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s is a difficult journey, but being part of a community that is working as a team for the good of that person is the first step.