Special Sessions: Preventing Care Giver Burnout on 2/27

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Caring for a loved one our spouse is difficult and can easily lead to caregiver burnout.

The Memory Center Atlanta is pleased to offer information sessions lead by Join Certified Dementia Practitioner, Michelle Hartlage and guests about caregiver burnout and how to prevent it.

Learn the symptoms of compassion fatigue and strategies to prevent it.  Attendees will leave equipped with resources to assist you as a caregiver.

These sessions will also act as an introductory to the Caregiver resilience club.

When:  February 27th, 2018 from 6pm-7pm

Where:  The Memory Center, Atlanta,12050 Findley Rd Johns Creek, GA 30097

When to Move from Assisted Living to a Memory Care Facility

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Image of man talking with senior father

When seniors are no longer able to live safely and independently at home, spouses, children and/or caregivers often look towards assisted living communities. However, while these facilities are wonderful at providing escalating care for the general senior population, assisted living communities are not the same as memory care.

While they may have an exclusive memory care wing or unit- memory care is not their exclusive niche. This can unintentionally result in lesser-quality care for seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

When is it time to transition from assisted living to memory care?

So, the question becomes, when should one consider transitioning to memory care rather than assisted living?

Someone has a dementia diagnosis

If you, your spouse, or a loved one has a dementia diagnosis that now requires more attentive care, it’s often best to skip assisted living options and move directly into memory care.

Major transitions are never easy and moving is one of the hardest. While it may be tempting to move into assisted living first, planning to transition to memory care later, this is more difficult for everyone in the long-run – particularly the person experiencing dementia.

If you’re worried about being separated from a spouse, know that you can visit anytime and that – in the big picture – keeping stress and strain to a minimum is the best way to minimize dementia symptoms as much as possible.

You suspect your loved one is unsafe

Memory care communities are devoted to their residents’ safety. If your loved one is wandering out of the home, getting lost when out and about, forgets to turn off stove tops or ovens, neglects to take important medicines, no longer adheres to normal routines, isn’t paying bills or you notice a signs of physical or mental/emotional decline, it’s time to explore memory care options.

Their social and emotional world is shrinking

Two elderly residents at an assisted living facility celebrate their birthdaysAs dementia progresses, an individual’s normal social activities or routines can actually be more harmful than helpful to their sense of well-being as the result of the people they no longer recognize, stories they can’t keep up with or activities they can no longer participate in due to their memory loss.

At this point, a memory care community is the best solution because your loved one will be living in an environment that is wholly dedicated to his/her safety and well-being, eliminating the triggers that exacerbate cognitive decline and supporting a healthy, active social network in a way that is secure and satisfying.

What is the difference between assisted living and memory care communities?

Memory care is a very unique and specialized form of skilled nursing, wholly dedicated to providing top-quality care to seniors with dementia and dementia-related conditions. Simultaneously, these communities provide as much independence, freedom, creativity, activity, and sense of community as they can – all within the medical and scientific framework of dementia – as well as the nuances that improve care for dementia patients. This level of care differs from that in an assisted living facility.

Specialized training

Everyone from the memory care community’s administrators to doctors, nurses, aides and housekeeping continuously attend trainings and seminars that include both research-backed education, as well as simulations and practices that help everyone gain a deeper understanding of what it’s like to live with dementia, as well as what it’s like to love someone with dementia.

Nuanced activities

The activities offered to residents at a memory care facility are not only offered in regards to the residents’ interests and talents, they are also structured to promote:

  • Activities that help to slow down the progression of dementia.
  • Programs, classes, and offerings that cheer, calm and stimulate residents without contributing to anxiety or worry.
  • Schedules reflect a healthy circadian rhythm  – taking advantage of daylight so residents are more likely to rest well, mitigating unsettling sundowner syndrome.

Tailored architectural & interior design

tmc town centerThe architecture and interior design in a memory care community are entirely focused on creating a safe, positive and calm environment for the residents. In addition to plenty of common areas and social gathering spaces, you’ll notice these communities do not provide kitchens to their residents – which significantly reduces the chances of burn injuries or fires, which are very common in assisted living facilities when a resident has dementia. Innovative security features help make sure nobody can exit the premises without alerting caregivers.

Thoughtful dining options

Delicious and nutritious meals are offered, three times a day, designed to enable the residents’ ability to choose what they eat – while ensuring all options provide adequate daily calories and nutrition, specific to a resident’s preferences and/or personal dietary restrictions/recommendations.

A tremendous support network

Finally, memory care centers provide an invaluable support network for residents as well as their families, loved ones, and caregivers.

Visit us at The Memory Center or schedule a tour online to learn more about memory care options Virginia Beach, Richmond, and Atlanta.

Contact The Memory Center

Can You Recover From Alzheimer’s or Dementia?

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Finding out a loved one has Alzheimer’s or other form of dementia is scary.  One of the first questions people ask is if there is a cure, or a way to recover.

While certain medications can help slow the progression for a time, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s or dementia. Alzheimer’s disease leads to cell death and tissue loss in the brain which ultimately affects memory, behavior, bodily functions or other systems.  It is a progressive disease that eventually leaves the person unable to safely care for themselves.

While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, research shows treatments and activities that stimulate the senses may improve behavior and mood, including decreased agitation.  Activities such as art, singing or listening to music fight boredom and may help trigger past memories.

At The Memory Center our daily activities are designed to inspire purpose, validate actions and invigorate while providing the highest quality of life for residents.  Functional and fun are key components of our activities.

Our multi-sensory activities program increases communication, socialization, physical movement and motor abilities.

Some Health Problems May Mimic Alzheimer’s Symptoms

alz care richmond va
Some medications can produce dementia-like symptoms.

If you, or a family member, are exhibiting memory problems the first step is to talk to a doctor.

Not all memory loss is related to Alzheimer’s or dementia.  There are other reasons you might experience memory problems including thyroid issues, stress, vitamin deficiencies or certain medications.  In these instances, once the cause is identified, your doctor can provide a course of treatment to manage, or even reverse, the symptoms.

Read more about how Alzheimer’s affects the brain or contact us for information about programs at The Memory Center in Virginia Beach, Midlothian/Richmond and Atlanta. 



The Memory Center Is Now Open in Atlanta

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The Memory Center, Atlanta

The Memory Center has expanded and built a new community in Johns Creek, GA.  Our location opened in the Fall of 2017. Our Atlanta community will feature our unique Town Center design to promote a variety of independent, daily experiences.  Filled with natural light, each Town Center includes plenty of spaces to gather and iconic stimuli from the past.

Maintaining a Sense of Home


Click for larger image.

To maintain a sense of home our Johns Creek design also features neighborhoods that surround our Town Center.


Each neighborhood has its own quiet and relaxing living room, small dining room, and full kitchen.  Memory Center residents can use the kitchen to keep personal items, and with staff supervision, can bake desserts and other favorites.

Learn More about Our Atlanta Memory Care Facility

Read more about The Memory Center philosophy or contact us for more information about The Memory Center, Atlanta.

Contact The Memory Center


The Memory Center, Atlanta Now Open – Official Press Release

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Contact: Michelle Hartlage, Admissions & Marketing Director, 770-476-3678, MichelleH@thememorycenter.com



Johns Creek, GA — The Memory Center Atlanta, A MemCare Community, is the region’s newest total memory care for people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Located at 12050 Findley Rd., Johns Creek, GA 30097, directly behind Emory Johns Creek Hospital.

On Monday, November 27, 2017, The Memory Center Atlanta LLC received their State of Georgia Assisted Living Permit to maintain and operate an Assisted Living Community with a capacity of 96 residents. MemCare Chairman and CEO, Kevin DiBona said, “We are very excited to bring The Memory Center Atlanta to the Johns Creek area. The support we have received from the local community has been incredible. Now that we have received the needed permit, we are ready to start caring for the people who have been patiently waiting for our opening. Thank you to all of the families for their trust in us. We look forward to providing the highest quality of care to their loved ones.”

Innovative design including a Town Center, Chattahoochee Tavern, and Fox Theater set the scene for daily activity programs, events, music, and more offered to residents living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias in the Johns Creek, GA area. The community is comprised of 48 residential suites divided into four neighborhoods. Residents will enjoy freedom throughout the entire community including the large garden areas and walking trails that are secured for their safety. Onsite nursing staff and Medical Director provide the highest quality of care for each resident 24 hours per day.

The Memory Center communities have a reputation for providing free educational seminars to help local communities learn more about Alzheimer’s and other dementias. For more information regarding upcoming events or to schedule a tour email: michelleh@thememorycenter.com or call 770-476-3678.

About The Memory Center
The Memory Center Atlanta, A MemCare Community located at 12050 Findley Rd., Johns Creek, GA 30097 is the company’s third stand-alone memory care community dedicated to assist persons living with the Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias. The Virginia Beach based company has a community located at 1853 Old Donation Pkwy., Virginia Beach, VA and 13800 Bon Secours Drive, Midlothian, VA. The Memory Center is committed to establishing high quality care not as a standard but as a benchmark.

The Memory Center, Atlanta Now Open

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memory care johns creek ga

The Memory Center, Atlanta in Johns Creek is officially open and excited to welcome our first residents. 

Our comprehensive facility specializes in the care of those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia.  We believe the challenging conditions of an aging brain should be met with a caring, interactive community designed around the individual.

Read more about our newest memory care community or contact us to schedule a tour. 

When to Move To A Memory Care Facility

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In most cases dementia is a condition that develops gradually making it easy to miss, or misunderstand, signs and symptoms – especially in the early stages.

By the time you notice a family member or loved one demonstrating memory loss, confusion, agitation, personality changes, and other dementia-related symptoms it is often a sign you will eventually need to alter their living situation to accommodate these, and future, changes.

As Alzheimer’s and dementia impact more of the brain there may be a point where the individual simply can’t live on their own.  Some families consider a move assisted living, which can be helpful, however, not all specialize in the caring for those with memory loss.  At a memory care facility, your loved one is cared for by staff who are trained and experienced in caring for patients living with dementia. This includes everything from how to best communicate and encourage, appropriate activities to beat boredom and important safety and health considerations.  

Below we outline some top signs a memory care facility might be a a good fit for your loved one.

You Constantly Worry About Them Getting Lost or Wandering

memory care richmond va
Secure courtyard at The Memory Center, Richmond

Those living with dementia can forget where they are or become disoriented and frightened.  In many instances this can lead to wandering, which can put them in dangerous situations.  Wandering is often a response to a physical need, such as wanting a drink of water, the desire to look for a familiar face or triggered by a past memory (such as needing to get to work on time). 

Aside from getting lost, wandering can also lead to dangerous falls or other injuries.

Memory care facilities, such as The Memory Centers, are designed with safe places for walking, safety measures such as eliminating trip hazards and equipped with security features.  In addition, staff are trained to recognize the signs of potential wandering and know how to re-direct the individual with appropriate activities, music and conversation. 

They Are Neglecting Their Health & Hygiene

Adults with dementia and memory loss may also forget to take care of themselves or lack the skills to do so.  They may forget to take prescription medications on time, take too little or too much.  You may also notice them skipping meals and no longer able to adhere to a well-balanced, nutritious diet.

Other signs include unkempt hair, wearing dirty, mismatched clothes or clothes inappropriate for the season such as winter coats in the middle of summer.  This are indicators their dementia is likely interfering with day to day personal care.

If your loved one is neglecting their health and hygiene, a memory care facility can support them with medication management, proper nutrition, bathing, toileting and other important aspects of their health.

Their Current Living Situation Or Level Of Care Is No Longer Enough

Unfortunately, as Alzheimer’s and dementia progress, so does the level of care needed for the individual.  Care you were once able to manage at home, with occasional hired help, or even with assisted living, become inadequate.  The later stages of the disease will eventually require around the clock care, specialized care.

In some instances remaining in their current living situation can become dangerous not only for the individual but for their primary caregiver.  Even if renovating a home to eliminate falls on stairs, trip hazards and slips in the shower were financially feasible, many caregivers simply aren’t able to handle the physical demands that accompany around the clock care. 

Memory Care Doesn’t Mean They Can’t Live Well With Alzheimer’s and Dementia

when to choose memory care
The Memory Center, Virginia Beach

At The Memory Centers we get to know the person for who they are today, not who they used to be.  Each day is designed to inspire purpose and full of daily activities, music, games and events to focus and engage the aging mind, which also eases common symptoms of boredom and agitation.

Our atmosphere is peaceful, natural, and filled with sunlight including safe access to an outdoor courtyard and secure walking trails.

If you are considering a memory care facility in Richmond/Midlothian, Virginia Beach or Johns Creek/Atlanta, contact us for more information about our specialized programs. 


Memory, Dementia, and Alzheimer’s Resources in Atlanta, GA

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memory care atlanta gaThe beginning stages of dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other age-related memory issues can seem negligible – a forgotten appointment, not remembering a face or name, an error in a favorite recipe, etc. Over time, the cumulative effects of these diseases may require outside assistance. For many, this assistance comes by way of a spouse or family caregiver.

When a memory disease progresses further, additional help is often required. It’s so important to begin memory-focused caregiving as soon as possible. Scientists and doctors on the forefront of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease overwhelmingly agree proper care and treatment at the early stages of the disease can have remarkable effects in slowing progress and potentially reversing some side effects.  Below we’ll dive into some of the memory care resources available in Atlanta, GA.

Memory Care & Caregiver Support is Thriving in Atlanta, GA

The good news for individuals requiring memory care – and their caregivers – is the Atlanta area is teeming with resources just for you. Here are some places to start if you or a loved one is experiencing age-related cognitive decline as you form a plan.

Financial Support for Memory Care

Memory care can be expensive. From extra doctor’s appointments that require days off work – to medications, caregiving, and/or transferring a loved one to a memory care facility – costs can easily outpace your available budget. Fortunately, financial resources are available.

Schedule an appointment for an official diagnosis

memory care in johns creek gaFirst, bring your concerns to your general physician and have the condition diagnosed. A clear diagnosis not only ensures your loved one begins recommended protocols, lifestyle changes and/or treatments ASAP, it also places you in position for the financial assistance available to you.

Contact your health insurance carrier

Once you have an official doctor’s diagnosis and recommended treatment plan, contact your health insurance carrier and ask for a list of memory care providers in your area that are covered. This can offset care costs significantly – or entirely – depending on your plan’s details.

Contact Medicare/Medicaid

Are you already covered by Medicare/Medicaid? The aforementioned advice applies. If you aren’t covered yet (the patient must be 65-years or older or already qualify for disability), make a call and see if your loved one is eligible for additional coverage.

Typically, Medicare covers the Following Memory Care Costs:

  • 80% of the costs required to diagnose Alzheimer’s and dementia-related conditions as well as doctor-advised treatments, such as medication or psychological counseling
  • Some level of home care services and/or equipment, most commonly during the later stages of the disease
  • Certain aspects of facility-based care on a temporary basis
  • Large portions of a person’s caregiving expenses if the patient qualifies via low-income maximums

You may find it’s worth paying extra for Medicare’s Supplemental Insurance coverage in order to increase the level of memory care coverage they offer. We recommend reading Medicare for Alzheimer’s and Dementia for more detailed explanations about the financial support Medicare offers.

Veteran’s Administration Resources

va benefits for nursing home careThe VA offers comprehensive resources – financially and via memory care services – to those who’ve served our country as well as their families.  These services include things like:

Visit the VA’s Dementia Care page for more information and resources. You can also contact the local VA to learn more about specific services in your neighborhood.

Memory Care at Home

The Atlanta area has dozens of licensed, high-quality home care agencies. While home-based care allows those with dementia to remain in place for as long as they’re comfortable, these agencies do better in the general home care arena, without being specific to memory care.

Some of the services available to you via home care aides include companionship, grocery/meal prep services, bathing/grooming, and so on. However, because most caregivers are not memory care experts, they may not be able to meet the high demands of a patient with progressive cognitive decline.

Typically, it makes more sense for those in mid- to later stages of dementia to live in a memory care-specific community. Always use a third-party agency, such as The Georgia Association for Home Health Agencies to verify a home care provider is licensed and Medicare approved.

Adult Day Care in Atlanta, GA

Adult day care is another option for keeping your loved one home as long as possible, while still being able to work or take a much-needed break from caregiving. Most centers allow drop-in or scheduled care, during normal business hours, once a client is enrolled.

Visit the Georgia Adult Day Services Association to find an adult day care specializing in memory care near you.

Memory Care Centers in Atlanta, GA

Memory Care Center in atlanta ga

Once an adult is into the mid- or late-stages of cognitive decline, it becomes very difficult for a spouse, family member, or regular home care aides to provide adequate care. 

Memory Care Centers are very special places, designed to provide the highest-quality of memory care available in a safe, caring and stimulating environment. Memory care centers are very different from generalized assisted living communities because we focus 100% of our staffing, energy, research and methods on the most forward-thinking memory care findings.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by all there is to do in the wake of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis or because your spouse requires more care than you can provide? Please reach out to the Memory Center and we will do our best to be of assistance.

We are experts in all aspects of memory care and can help you create a viable plan, work through the financial FAQs, and outline memory care resources that make the most sense for your situation.

Contact The Memory Center

The Memory Center Atlanta Grand Opening

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memory center atlanta
Memory Center CEO, Kevin DiBona and Emory Johns Creek Hospital CEO, Maryilyn Margolis at the Opening of The Memory Center, Atlanta.

Our newest community, The Memory Center, Atlanta had its Grand Opening ceremonies on Wednesday, October 25th. The Memory Center, Atlanta is the most comprehensive facility specializing in the care of those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia in the Atlanta area.

Located in Johns Creek next to City Hall and Emory Johns Creek Hospital at 12050 Findley Rd, the community is comprised of 48 residential suites designed and constructed around our innovative Town Center concept.

View the slideshow below for more images of our Grand Opening festivities.

For more information or to schedule an in-person tour of The Memory Center, Atlanta, please contact us online or by phone at 678-456-4304.





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