What are the Key Indicators that Your Loved One May Require Memory Care Soon?

Elderly man looking in cupboard

Do you and your family have a loved one that you are concerned about? Are you concerned about his or her memory? Were you aware that dementia symptoms can vary day to day and may not be easy to pinpoint when it is time to consider memory care? What are the key indicators that your loved one may require memory care soon? We have seven questions for you and your family to review that can help you evaluate your loved one’s situation. 

1. Has your outgoing and calm loved one become withdrawn or nervous? Know that when a person is struggling with dementia, he or she may begin to decline social invitations, or may become too nervous to drive, go on walks alone, or even leave the house. 

2. Has your calm and friendly loved one become agitated or aggressive? Some seniors with dementia may become confused and agitated, and that can lead to violence or aggression. They may kick, hit, or bite people, or they may insult family members or friends, or accuse them of theft. 

3. Is your usually well dressed and clean loved one not following a daily hygiene routine? People with dementia often forget their daily hygiene practices, like bathing or changing clothes. They may struggle to comb their hair, brush their teeth or apply makeup. 

4. Is your loved one beginning to wander? This behavior is very concerning because when seniors become confused or disoriented they may wander far from home without realizing where they are or how to get back. This can be dangerous, especially if your loved one wanders near busy roads or gets caught in severe weather. 

5. Have you and your family evaluated the living conditions of your loved one? Are living conditions safe?  Often people with dementia may begin to hoard household items, or neglect cleaning or laundry. They may eat spoiled food, neglect the care of their pets, or forget to turn off the stove. 

6. Are you concerned about your loved one’s medications and whether they are properly managed?  Be aware that if your loved one is forgetting to take prescription medication or is taking too much, this behavior can lead to serious consequences. 

7. Does your loved one get proper nutrition? Many seniors aging in place may forget to eat, or they may overeat after forgetting that they have recently had a meal. Significant changes in weight can be a warning sign that it may be time for memory care. 

If you have answered these seven questions and determined that your loved one may need additional care, a good place to start is with his or her doctor. Ask the doctor about the next steps you and your family should take and whether there is a dementia diagnosis. Memory care communities can provide the support needed for your loved one to age in a safe, stimulating environment where his or her medical and emotional needs are met. 

Our office can help guide a family through long-term care planning for aging parents and loved ones. No matter where you are in life’s journey, we can help. The most important thing is to protect yourself and those you love.  Whether you need to update your estate plan, are preparing for future long-term care needs, or have a loved one entering or already in a nursing home, we are ready to assist you. We have three convenient locations and are ready to serve the communities around Highlands and Polk County, Florida. Take your first step by contacting us today.

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