Age-Related Memory Loss vs. Dementia

An adult daughter, confident she knows how to recognize age-related memory loss vs. dementia, sits with her older mother on a bed.

Not all memory loss is created equal. There is a distinct physiological difference between age-related memory loss and dementia. Knowing the difference can help you remain calm when normal forgetfulness makes you fear the worst.

That said, ignoring clear signs of dementia means your loved one isn’t getting the help and support they need to slow down the disease’s progression and begin creating a long-term care plan.

Keep reading to learn more about recognizing the differences between age-related memory loss vs. dementia and what to do about it.

Memory Loss: Age-Related or Dementia?

All of us have moments where our mental faculties are not at their best. We forget an appointment, can’t recall a name, or absent-mindedly miss a turn on a familiar route. And, as we age, these scenarios are more common. 

However, with Alzheimer’s, these forgetful or foggy moments are not recoverable, happen more frequently, and can negatively impact our mood, behavior, and personal safety. 

If you are worried about memory loss, it’s best to schedule an appointment with your general physician. While there is no single test to diagnose dementia or Alzheimer’s, physicians use health screenings, questionnaires, brain scans, and other tools to determine the cause of changes in thinking, movement, or behavior.

In the meantime, here is a chart you can use to determine the difference between normal, age-related memory loss or “senior moments” vs. signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s. We’ve divided the chart into the main memory functions:

  • Short-term memory or learning something new
  • Organizing, problem-solving, and making decisions
  • Recalling words/language
  • Geographic orientation and navigation
  • Visual perception (distance, depth perception, etc.)
  • Mood or behavior

 

Memory Function/Ability Normal Aging Dementia
Short-term memory/learning something new May occasionally forget an appointment, name, or a specific date but recover it later.

Forget something you were told, and memory may or may not be jogged when reminded.

Can misplace keys, glasses, remote, etc., but can usually retrace steps and find it–or come across it later and think, “Oh, that’s right…I remember putting it there when….”

Cannot keep track of appointments and often forget the names of close friends or family members, even if with them that day. 

Repeatedly asking the same question, often with only minutes or less than an hour between questions. 

Misplaced items are frequently found in strange locations, such as a remote control in the bathroom medicine cabinet and reading glasses in the pantry or fridge. 

Organizing/problem-solving/decision-making It can take a little longer to organize things or think things through, but the process still has a clear start, middle, and logical finish.

It’s more difficult to multitask, but tasks can be completed one at a time.

Occasionally make a poor decision.

Make occasional math mistakes with finances but they can be easily traced and corrected.

Planning and organizing lead to confusion and do not often result in a final answer or finished product.

Difficulty remaining focused or concentrated on a single task.

Increased bad or irresponsible decisions, especially around finances.

No longer able to keep track of and pay monthly bills on time–or at all.

Language recall Sometimes cannot find the right word, or it takes longer to rise to the surface, but usually find it or it comes later.

It can take more concentration to follow conversations, especially with a fast talker or with more than one person speaking at the same time.

Easily lose a conversation thread if distracted or multiple people speak at once.

Frequently can’t find the right word and begin speaking about “that person,” or “that thing,” without memory recall happening at all.

Struggle to maintain a conversation or to follow and join an existing conversation.

Consistently lose the thread of what someone is saying.

Geographic/time orientation and navigation May sometimes forget the day of the week or date (especially after retirement) but can figure it out and can use tools to find it.

Occasionally walk into a room and forget why you’re there or what you wanted.

Can’t keep days and dates straight anymore, even with reminders.

Often wander around the house without remembering purpose or intent.

Getting lost on routine walking routes or while running errands in familiar places. 

Get confused about times of day or seasons, no rhythm around the passage of time.

Visual perception (distance, depth perception, etc.) Any vision- or perception-related changes are related to cataracts or vision problems diagnosable by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. Spatial intelligence falters without any changes in physical vision. More prone to tripping, misjudging distance, and misinterpreting reflections or patterns.
Mood or behavior Can feel a bit low or anxious, but it ebbs and flows.

May feel uneasy about attending social engagements or large gatherings.

Become set in behavior ways and can be irritated when there’s a change or disruption in “the routine.”

More complete withdrawal and lack of interest in social gatherings and events.

Can become increasingly anxious, afraid, or depressed/angry and may also show a decline in self-confidence.

Becomes usually irritated at home, with friends/family, or in normally comfortable situations. This may increase around sunset or in the evening (sometimes referred to as Sundowner’s Syndrome).

 

If you notice increases in the “normal age-related memory loss column,” it is still worth scheduling an appointment with a general physician to check-in. A simple screening can help determine whether further analysis is required.

If you do move forward with a comprehensive assessment and receive a dementia diagnosis, it’s time to begin planning the next steps forward. 

Age-Related Memory Loss vs. Dementia: We Are Here to Help

While an Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis is devastating, research shows most adults with dementia live for another 20 years on average. There is still plenty of time for your loved one to enjoy a high quality of life by enlisting the support of memory care experts.

The Memory Center can help with all aspects of care planning, such as remaining in touch with the latest news regarding medications, diet, and lifestyle changes that slow down the progression of dementia, information on caregiver support, and how to cover the costs of long-term dementia care.

Paying for long-term dementia care can be a particular challenge. Click below to learn how to address finances when providing for a loved one.

How to Pay for Dementia Care

Understanding and Managing Dementia Caregiver Burnout

A female caregiver walks with a senior woman, allowing her family members to take a break to avoid dementia caregiver burnout.

Every caregiver is at risk for burnout. However, those caring for loved ones with dementia are particularly susceptible.

Most of the time, dementia caregiver burnout is a slow progression, easily missed in real-time. Without adequate support and dedication to a self-care routine, it’s not uncommon for caregivers to experience serious illness, physical decline, or injuries or to become overwhelmed by depression and feelings of hopelessness.

If you take care of someone with dementia, make sure to prioritize self-care, stress management, and your mental and emotional wellbeing. Keep reading to learn about dementia caregiver burnout.

Signs of Caregiver Fatigue Leading to Burnout

The following are some of the “red flags” that can indicate dementia caregiver fatigue. If any of them resonate with you, it’s a sign that it’s time to enlist memory care support.

1. Your Life Lacks Joy

When the overwhelm of caregiving is greater than the joy you find in day-to-day life, it’s a sign you need help. 

Caregivers often believe their feelings of depression or hopelessness are primarily due to experiencing their loved one’s mental and physical decline. While this is undoubtedly true, it’s easy to miss the fact that your exhaustion, mental fatigue, and the physical demands of caregiving may also be causing you to experience depression.

If you wake up with more dread or anxiety than joy in your heart, begin exploring support options.

2. You’re Tired All the Time

Family caregivers often work 24/7, with few or no chances to take a break. And, to make matters worse, the combinations of sundowning, a loved one’s insomnia or nighttime wakefulness, and fear for the safety of your spouse or family member make it impossible to get a good night’s sleep.

Sleeplessness and constant fatigue are clear signs more support is needed.

3. Lack of Appetite, Overeating, or Poor Eating Habits

Caring for a loved one with dementia can cause you to lose track of time making it difficult to adhere to a daily schedule. And your diet can be impacted.

When providing care, it can be easy to skip meals or just snack on processed food that lacks nourishment. Furthermore, the stress and anxiety inherent in dementia caregiving can diminish the appetite, further depleting access to much-needed nourishment. 

If you don’t have time to shop, cook, or prepare meals, connect with family, friends, a religious or spiritual community, etc., and ask for support. Dropping off meals, running errands, or sending gift cards to be used for to-go orders and deliveries is an easy way for those who love you to support the cause. 

Professional caregiving agencies also offer grocery shopping, meal preparation, and other services that alleviate your need to complete daily tasks.

4. Difficulty Concentrating or Perpetual Mental Fogginess

Have you reached a point where your thought processes aren’t what they used to be? Are you having trouble concentrating, remembering things, or keeping the days, dates, and times straight? Has your loved one missed a medication dose or a necessary appointment because your mental fog got in the way? 

This is another all-too-common sign of being overwhelmed. Your wellbeing and the wellbeing of your loved one depends on your ability to nourish your body, mind, and spirit so that you can rejuvenate and reclaim your former clarity. 

5. Quick to Anger or Feeling Frustrated or Irritated

Does your fuse seem significantly shorter than usual? That’s normal. You’re under a tremendous amount of stress, and when you look at all caregivers handle daily, it’s no wonder you’re quick to anger or feel frustrated or irritated.

Unfortunately, left unaddressed, these pent-up feelings can mean you experience verbal outbursts directed at the one you love, and this creates a bleak cycle of regret, shame, and self-judgment. It also means your loved one suffers unintentionally.

While occasional anger, frustration, irritation, or feelings of resentment are not necessarily a sign of burnout, they shouldn’t become the standard. If these feelings have become a regular part of your emotional landscape, you’re at the end of your dementia caregiver burnout rope. It’s time to take a much-deserved break.

Tips for Managing Caregiver Stress & Burnout

Serving as a caregiver doesn’t mean you stop caring for yourself! Here are some tips for managing stress and avoiding dementia caregiver burnout.

  • Connect with dementia-related resources and support groups.
  • Reach out to trusted neighbors, friends, family members, etc., to provide regular respite care so you can take care of yourself.
  • Keep the house stocked with healthy foods and snacks, so everything you eat nourishes and supports your physical wellbeing.
  • Locate adult daycare and professional respite care options in your area.
  • Learn more about the cost of memory care and how to pay for it to create a long-term plan that encompasses your needs as well as the needs of your loved one.

Most importantly, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, ask for help. Sometimes asking is all it takes.

Manage Dementia Caregiver Burnout With the Memory Center

Dementia caregiving is a journey, but you don’t have to go it alone. 

Please schedule an appointment with The Memory Center to learn more about our daytime and residential memory care options, in addition to other essential community resources to prevent caregiver dementia burnout. 

As a caregiver, you may also be worrying about finances. There are payment options to help you cover the cost of dementia care. Learn more by clicking below.

How to Pay for Dementia Care

How to Pay for Dementia Care

a woman talks at home with her parents about paying for dementia care

Every long-term care plan should consider how to pay for dementia care. The Alzheimer’s Association cites that one-in-nine people over the age of 65 live with dementia, and that figure increases to two-in-ten by ages 71-79. So, planning to pay for memory care is a wise move, and there are plenty of creative ways to go about it.

There are several things that support dementia care planning:

  • Have a long-term care plan in place before you need it or as soon as you find out you have a progressive/terminal prognosis
  • Early diagnosis
  • Meet with a financial advisor before retirement to create a multifaceted plan that accommodates several different scenarios

7 Tips to Paying for Dementia Care

There isn’t “one way” to pay for dementia care. If savings or retirement accounts don’t cover the total expenses, there are other ways to finance the costs.

1. Home care that graduates to residential memory care

The research shows that early transition into full-time memory care is better than later admissions when it comes to mitigating stress and improving the quality of life for the resident. 

However, many individuals and clients choose to remain at home using in-home care providers to assist with general support and then make a plan to transition into residential memory care when a certain set of criteria are met (typically related to the progression from early dementia to mid-stage dementia symptoms).

This plan helps to buffer the coffers since home care is more affordable than residential care. Full-time in-home care from a licensed agency costs an average of about $4000 per month, while residential options cost between $4500 to $9000 per month – depending on the community. Saving at the front end using home care options can help you save for the residential care required down the road.

2. Medicare

Enrolling in Medicare three months before turning 65 is one of the most important steps you can take to cover care costs during your senior years. While Medicare doesn’t pay for things like room and board at a memory care center, it does typically pay for:

  • Medical-related expenses
  • Physician/specialist visits
  • Prescription
  • Necessary durable medical equipment
  • Hospice care

Implementing Medicare benefits helps to draw down the total monthly costs associated with dementia care. The modest, additional costs for Medicare Plan C and D can alleviate other costs associated with paying for dementia care.

3. Long-term care insurance

Some people don’t realize they ever enrolled in a long-term insurance plan because it came directly from a previous employer and is debited from pension funds or because their spouse/significant others handled “the business sides of things.” 

Comb through all of the financial documents, files, and retirement statements to see if there is an existing long-term care insurance plan you didn’t know about. If so, you may find that thousands of dollars per month are already accounted for.

The sooner you apply for long-term care, the more affordable it is. So, if you’ve arrived at this post while researching long-term care and dementia care options, this is a good time to contact an insurance representative to learn more about whether long-term care is a good option for you.

4. Veterans Administration (VA) benefits

Did you or your significant other serve in the U.S. military? VA benefits are available for a range of services supporting dementia care, including:

  • Home-based health and care support
  • Home caregivers or health aids
  • Respite care (to give a primary spouse or family caregivers regular breaks from the rigors of caregiving)
  • Adult daycare (just like its child-centric counterpart, most communities or memory care centers offer adult day care for seniors with dementia so spouses/caregivers can go to their day jobs or attend important activities, outings, and social activities)
  • Nursing homes or acute care facilities
  • Palliative and hospice care

Visit the VA’s page on Dementia Care to learn more about their services and contact specialists who can answer your questions.

5. Employee and retirement benefits

If the dementia diagnosis is given when you or your loved one are still working, schedule a meeting with the human resources (HR) or benefits department. The company and its employee benefits may offer support you aren’t aware of. This could include things like:

  • Better health insurance options
  • Paid sick leave
  • Short-term or long-term disability benefits

Most retirement plans offer penalty-free withdrawals for individuals younger than 59 and a half under qualifying circumstances. An Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis is one of those qualifiers and may allow you to draw early (or more than usual) from the plan, sans penalties, if the total of your dementia care costs exceeds a certain percentage of your gross earnings. Meeting with HR or benefits representatives is essential to learn more about your options.

6. Liquidating properties and assets

Again, meeting with a financial advisor is the best way to understand where you are and your best plan forward. For some couples, this is a time to sell a piece of property or liquidate certain assets or valuables. 

For example, if moving a spouse into memory care means you plan to downsize, this might be a time to sell the house and roll part of the proceeds into the memory care fund.

7. Reverse mortgage options

If your home is paid off or almost paid off, you may qualify for a reverse mortgage. Many banks are willing to lend substantial sums of money using the house as collateral because of its real estate value. 

Reverse mortgages operate similarly to refinancing. They are available to qualifying homeowners 65 years or older to borrow against the home’s equity without risking their title or selling the home.

8. Personal loans or family contributions

Once you’ve processed the initial shock and adjustment period after an Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis, we recommend scheduling a family meeting. The need for dementia care is a matter of “when” rather than “if,” so everyone should have a voice in the plan. 

Some families divide care costs and make monthly payments to support their loved one’s care, while others take out a loan to front the costs and then share the monthly loan payment expenses.

Start Visiting Memory Care Centers to Learn More

Visiting different memory care communities is a smart way to learn about all the different ways their clients and families go about paying for dementia care. Make that one of your questions as you learn more about their communities and care costs. Our administrators have a wealth of information regarding funding and payment options.

Learn More About Our Communities

What To Do When You Get An Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

Getting an official diagnosis that memory lapses are the result of Alzheimer’s or dementia is life-altering. If you or your loved one still function “normally” in day-to-day life, it can be tempting to go into denial and pretend as if everything’s just fine until there are more obvious or alarming signs that compromise the quality of life.

The truth is, however, that fast-action is the key to creating both short- and long-term care plans. There is still no cure for Alzheimer’s, and it is considered a progressive disease. The rate at which it progresses varies for each person, but it can happen more rapidly than expected, and this places the person with Alzheimer’s, his/her spouse, and loved ones in a crisis state.

Taking Timely, Methodical Actions After An Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

The more you learn about Alzheimer’s, and Alzheimer’s resources in your area, the faster you’ll be able to establish a personalized plan of action.

The goal is to give the person with Alzheimer’s ability to make some decisions for him/herself whenever possible. This becomes challenging – and then impossible – as the condition progresses because transitions are detrimental if you wait too long.

Learn about the disease and current treatment options

Hopefully, your medical team, including the neurologist, have provided you with lots of information about Alzheimer’s, all together it’s progression, and the known medications, lifestyle changes and treatment options that support a patient’s wellbeing.

Other helpful resources for learning about Alzheimer’s include:

Don’t hesitate to call or email your primary physician to schedule a follow-up appointment, so you can ask questions and listen to the answers you may not have been able to take in during the immediate consultation after the Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

Start the conversation regarding memory care options

Memory care will play a role at some point, and the quality of this care – and its ability to improve the quality of life for your loved one – is 100% related to how soon s/he transitions into the right community. This will probably require multiple conversations as you weigh the pros and cons of various options, and tour facilities and communities.

While the idea of staying home is preferred by many, caregiving for a middle- to late-stage Alzheimer’s patient is a full-time job. 

Unfortunately, contrary to the original plan, many spouses or close family members realize too late that they aren’t capable of providing the level of care required, 24/7. That results in a very traumatic transition into memory care, assisted living or nursing home care – and it may mean having to give up your first-choice if they don’t have space when you finally make a decision.

Tour your options as soon as you can

It’s helpful for prospective residents to tour memory care options themselves so they have some autonomy in the decision. However, we understand that this can be scary and nerve-wracking for many – and that some simply refuse to do it all together.

If your loved one is resistant to touring options with you, we recommend inviting a close family member or friend to accompany and support you. You might find starting the process solo – bringing back information and ideas – will motivate your spouse or loved one to accompany you the next time.

Read,Questions to Ask When Touring Memory Care Facilities, so you get the information and details you need to make a good decision.

Start to plan for the financial side of things

Memory care is an expense – whether you’re hiring full-time caregivers in your home or you transition into a memory care center. Unless your financial plan already accommodated for extended, long-term care of some kind – you’ll need to start preparing your finances.

Read,Affording Alzheimer’s Care, for some helpful ideas and tips for funding high-quality memory care.

There are situations where Medicare and Medicaid can subsidize expenses, but they rarely pay for the entirety of the costs associated with memory care. After establishing memory care options in your area, their administration and staff will help you review the realm of financial and payment choices available to you.

Keep your loved one as engaged and active as possible

Studies show over and over again that early action in terms of diet, lifestyle habits, social engagement, and mental stimulation are all key to slowing down and decreasing the progression of Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Often, the shock or embarrassment of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, combined with the complications associated with fading memory and social situations, leads to social isolation. This is a worst-case scenario because mental and social stimulation keeps those neural pathways open and firing.

Try to find daily activities, outings, and social settings that inspire feelings of connections, safety, and security for your loved one. This could also include taking advantage of adult day care options at a prospective memory care center as part of the transition into becoming a resident.

Establish your support network

Being a spouse, partner, or primary caregiver for someone with Alzheimer’s is a challenging job. You are going to need a range of support to help along the way.

Ideas include:

  • Learning about Alzheimer’s resources and support in your community
  • Working with a therapist or counselor to help you cope with the range of emotions that come up along the journey
  • Joining an Alzheimer’s support group
  • Ensuring you have respite care available to provide regular, much-needed breaks
  • Eating well, exercising, and maintaining social networks to prevent caregiver burnout

It takes a village to care for both those with Alzheimer’s as well as their spouses, family members, and loved ones. Establishing your support network while you have the time and space to do so allows you to activate support options as needed down the road.

Handling A Loved One’s Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

Remember: there is never a need to go it alone. 

After an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, enlist the support of family and friends to help you move forward – step-by-step.

Learn more about your loved one’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis and find support in these articles: 

Activities

 

We help our residents maintain a high quality of life through activities that benefit mind and body.

Schedule a Consultation

Morning Activities

Morning activities may include:

  • Exercise (aerobics, yoga stretches/meditation)
  • Trivia games
  • Music and singing

Afternoon Activities

Other afternoon activities include:

  • Creative and artistic classes (painting, molding clay, or creating decorations for their suite)
  • Walks, bird watching, or gardening in our beautifully landscaped gardens and paths

Evening Activities

After dinner, they can join games or other social activities in their neighborhood or head to our Theater for a musical, comedy or classic movie.

Activities for a Better Quality of Life

A typical day at The Memory Center is filled with activities 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. The program also provides visual, tactile, auditory, and olfactory stimulation.

Our activities program is grounded in the Montessori-based principles of respect, dignity, independence, and choice. All activities are designed with three A’s in mind to ensure they are:

  • Available across all levels and forms of dementia
  • Accessed and easily implemented by all staff
  • Adaptable to fit the resident’s age, interest or other abilities

Morning Activities

A day at The Memory Center starts with a hot cup of coffee and greetings from our Morning Welcome Crew who announce all the exciting activities planned for the day.

They carry colorful signs showing upcoming special events such as an entertainer or pet visits.

  • Singing
  • Art
  • Balloon volleyball in the Town Center
  • Bingo
  • Flower arranging
  • Gardening
  • Walking
  • Reading

Afternoon Activities

After lunch, residents meet in Town Center for our daily ice cream social.

On warm days we may sit outside on the patio or on a bench in the gardens to chat.

Evening Activities

In the evening, residents can gather in our Tavern for happy hour.

  • Social activities
  • Music
  • Games
  • Storytelling
  • Movies

Sample Activity Schedule

8:00 am Coffee and Overview with Morning Welcome Crew

9:00 am – 11:15 Morning Activities

11:30 am – 1:00pm Lunch

1:15 pm Ice Cream Social

2:00 – 4:30 pm Afternoon Activities

5:00 pm – 7:30 pm Dinner

7:45 – Evening Activities

Special Activities

Activities at The Memory Center include:

Music

Dancing, playing instruments or listening to music while holding objects such as flags, director batons, maracas, drums, bells, tambourines to encourage motion. Lyrics are projected on our movie screen with pictures or icons to help with memory, and we may feature entertainers representing various types of music.

We also encourage families to provide an iPod or CD with their family member or loved one’s favorite songs.

Poetry & Games

We utilize poetry, trivia, board games, reading, writing or storytelling to promote and encourage memory.

Art

Projects are designed to encourage memory. Projects are meaningful to the resident and use items he or she was exposed to in their past.

Hobby Activities

All hobbies are designed to give purpose and meaning to the activity. Favorite activities include sewing and wreath making. These activities include specific steps to encourage memory.

To encourage motion we incorporate activities of daily living such as setting the table, cleaning, laundry, folding or sorting. Other motion activities include rolling yarn, puzzles or card matching.

Cooking

Projects encourage memory by including simple steps. Using recipes and the act of stirring, pouring, measuring, rolling, tasting, smelling, encourages motion and/or stimulates memories.

Sports & Physical Activities

Physical Activities are designed to encourage motion and memory including sports that residents are familiar with such as baseball, tennis, and horseshoes. Our sports programs utilize adapted equipment that residents can safely use.

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A Long Track Record for Helping

 

★★★★★“I highly recommend The Memory Center and cannot say enough about the staff and employees who interact daily with the residents. The residents are encouraged to participate in various daily events and there are plenty of assistants to help them enjoy the activities.

The residents experience music, dancing, laughter, socializing, nature and a general feeling of contentment in a secure and happy environment.

The entire staff, from the director to the housekeepers can be found interacting with the residents. We are very pleased with the care our mother receives at The Memory Center.”

Kathy J.

 

Activities FAQ

Memory Center locations maintain an ABC license.

Residents who would like a drink or a glass of wine, if we have secured a prescription from their physician, can enjoy their favorite beverages during Happy Hour.

Our facilities are committed to keeping consumption to appropriate levels. Non-alcoholic beverages are also provided.

Residents at Memory Center care communities can socialize at The Tavern, as well as at other festive events, such as holiday celebrations, as well as sporting events, which we show on The Tavern’s wide-screen televisions.

Our Activities Director plans a variety of activities in each neighborhood every evening designed to promote motion as well as memory. Staff engages with the residents in both individual settings and small groups.

An aging brain presents challenges that we believe should be met with a caring, interactive community approach.

The dementia care at The Memory Center is designed around the individual. Our Town Center and Neighborhood are part of a unique model that has been designed specifically to assist residents living with memory challenges and memory loss. They are intended to reduce the frustration and agitation that can accompany memory problems and loss.

We offer a variety of daily activities tailored to the needs of an aging brain. The Memory Center and its locations boast low staff turnover and the reassurance of the highest quality of care. Our residents have the chance to live well with Alzheimer’s and dementia while their families enjoy the support and peace of mind.

 

More Resources

Amenities

Our community design features four neighborhoods that surround a Town Center. Each residence has their own quiet and relaxing living room, dining room and full kitchen.

Amenities

Dining

Our approach to nutrition is research-based, adhering largely to the anti-inflammatory Mediterranean Diet.

Our emphasis is on nutrient-dense whole foods, which means plenty of fresh produce, lean proteins, and fewer refined and processed foods.

Learn more about each Memory Center location and their approach to dining.

Dining

Pricing

An individual’s needs can change by the day. The Memory Center staff provides necessary daily assistance without burdening you with monthly bill changes.

Our all-inclusive pricing can simplify your budget planning and finances.

Pricing

TMC 2021 Polar Plunge – Watch Virtually

On February 11, 2021 The Memory Center management will take the plunge to raise funds for the Special Olympics. Our goal is to raise $1,000.

We will jump into a very cold pool and you can be part of the fun and follow along live on our Facebook page. 

Show your support and donate today.  Payment should be made payable to “Special Olympics Minnesota.”

Contact Roberta Gilbert at 757-412-1180 for more information.

 

The Memory Center Atlanta Toys For Tots Drive

atlanta toys for tots drive
Click to download a flyer.

Join The Memory Center Atlanta as we support Toys for Tots Campaign this holiday season.

All toys collected will go to the Atlanta Marine Toys for Tots group to distribute to children in our local community.

  • Accepting toys for kids ages 1-16
  • Toys should be new and unwrapped
  • Drop off at The Memory Center anytime Monday –Saturday 8am-6pm

The Memory Center Atlanta, 12050 Findley Rd, Johns Creek, GA 30097.
Please contact Dee Guiliani at dguliani@themememorycenter.com or 770-476-3678.

The Latest Alzheimer’s Facts, Figures & Stats [2020]

Medicine’s understanding of Alzheimer’s, and its effects on the human brain, is still in the pioneering phases. While we learn more all the time about how genetics, life events, and lifestyle components are involved in catalyzing the initial signs and progression of Alzheimer’s, the cure remains elusive.

With respect to the ever-emerging science pertaining to the causes, treatments, and potential for Alzheimer’s disease, we update our Alzheimer’s Disease Fact Sheet regularly to reflect the current research.

Accurate Facts, Figures, & Stats Improve Alzheimer’s Quality of Life

The more you remain up to date on the current research and studies’ findings, including Alzheimer’s facts, figures, and stats, the better you can improve the quality of life for yourself and the ones you love.

First, we’ll begin with some basic, bullet-point facts about Alzheimer’s disease (AD), followed by more detailed information to support the care and support provided for those with AD. The following facts are derived from two helpful AD resources: The NIH’s page on Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Alzinfo.org.

Visit our Resource Guide for Alzheimer’s Care & Support for more helpful AD websites.

  • AD is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States
  • Most people with late-onset AD exhibit signs and symptoms as early as their 60s, even if the diagnosis doesn’t happen until much later (more on that below).
  • Experts believe that AD-related changes in the brain may actually start as much as ten years before the beginning symptoms are detectable.
  • Early-onset AD comprises about 10% of the Alzheimer’s population and is typically noticed/diagnosed between the ages of 30 and 60.
  • Someone is diagnosed with AD about every 65 seconds.
  • Doctors predict as many as 14 million Americans will be living with Alzheimer’s by the year 2050.
  • One-third of all seniors die with Alzheimer’s or some other dementia-related condition
  • It costs about 350K per person to support the long-term health and wellbeing of an AD patient (read, Is Medicare/Medicaid an Option… for information about financing the care you need).
  • There are multiple forms of AD and dementia – early-onset, late-onset, Lewy Body, Parkinson’s-related, etc. Care and treatment plans may vary depending on the type.
  • Alzheimer’s genes (and other biomarkers) are identified, but they are not the sole cause of AD, nor does the presence of the genes mean an individual will get AD. 
  • There is no specific treatment for AD or dementia, although some drug treatment protocols slow its progression.
  • Certain lifestyle changes have been shown to slow down the progression of AD.

Those last two points are part of what makes living with Alzheimer’s so challenging. There are not always clear reasons why a person has the disease, and there is no tried-and-true treatment for AD at this time.

This is why ongoing research around Alzheimer’s potential causes and treatment methods is so important. The more we learn about the brain and how it is affected by Alzheimer’s-related proteins, amyloid plaques, and tau tangles, the closer we get to a potential cure. 

Early Diagnosis is Key

Because Alzheimer’s is often diagnosed at the beginning of the middle-stage, when cognitive impairment is too dramatic to ignore, patients, families, and caregivers miss the opportunity to make decisions before things are chaotic and stressful. By diagnosing AD in the early stages, you have time to:

  • Learn all you can and make a long-term AD care plan that involves the individuals’ wishes, desires, and goals
  • Make smart decisions about caregivers or facilities
  • Tour memory care centers
  • Implement diet and lifestyle changes that reduce inflammation and support a healthier mind and body.

Read What to Do About an Alzheimer’s Diagnosis to learn more about the first, critical items to consider in the wake of an official diagnosis.

Re-Evaluate Diet & Make Anti-inflammatory Shifts

Recent studies have shown that high-fat, high-sugar diets “prime the brain” for AD. Diets that are higher in fats, sugars, and processed foods contribute to inflammation in both the hippocampus and the frontal lobe of the brain, two areas that experience AD decline. 

Patients who have AD and who maintain their high-fat/sugar diets tend to progress more rapidly through the disease’s stages and have lower life expectancies. Making the switch to an inflammatory diet is a powerful one. The Fischer Center for Alzheimer’s Research writes, “Older men and women who ate a Mediterranean-style diet showed less shrinkage of the brain than their peers who did not eat foods typical of the Mediterranean region.”

Click here to read more about anti-inflammatory, Alzheimer’s-oriented diet recommendations.

Establish a Healthy Circadian Rhythm

You may have heard about sundowner’s syndrome, or you may have personal experience with it if you’re currently an AD caregiver. The more we learn about the body’s need for natural daylight and dark to maintain essential biochemical balance in the brain, the more there is a need to establish a healthy circadian rhythm in the home.

Alz.org’s page on Sleep Issues & Sundowning offers tips for how to establish healthy daily and nighttime rhythms to prevent these issues and support brain health. When you begin looking for long-term care options, make sure to ask about how they help to prevent and support sundowning for their residents.

Social Engagement & Activities Are Essential

The NIH states in addition to healthy diet and lifestyle practices, “… social engagement, and mentally stimulating pursuits…might also help reduce the risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.” 

If your loved one tends to retreat into depressed, anxious, or embarrassed seclusion, get in touch with Alzheimer’s support groups in your area, and learn how to keep AD patients socially stimulated and engaged to boost morale and their quality of life. 

Your busy calendar doesn’t have to be put on hold. Contact Adult Day Care or Respite Care options in your area to keep your loved one safe and ensure s/he remains social, participating in activities s/he enjoys to promote overall well being.

Click the links below for more helpful information on memory care and supporting your loved one through their Alzheimer’s diagnosis. 

TMC VA Beach Burrito Bar Fundraiser On March 6, 2020

Join The Memory Center Virginia Beach for a special lunch event on March 6th.  Enjoy a delicious lunch for only $5.00 while raising money for a great cause. Proceeds of each meal go to support The Alzheimer’s Association. 

Have Questions or want to RSVP? Contact Roberta Gilbert, Director of Marketing, at (757) 412-1180 or RobertaG@thememorycenter.com

 

Download a flyer for more information. 

Alzheimer’s & Dementia Services in Roswell, GA

Memory Care in Roswell, GA

Enjoy peace of mind knowing your loved one is receiving high-quality memory care and support based on the latest research and recommendations.

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At the Memory Center in Roswell, GA, we’ve developed our daily activities, programs, and services based on the most recent research into Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related diseases leading to cognitive decline. If you’re looking for a residential community that’s 100% devoted to memory care and dementia care, the Memory Center offers an affordable solution. 

Whether your focus is on our building’s design and decor or our patient-centered care, you will see that everything in our community aims to address our residents’ medical, physical, mental, social, and emotional needs. We know you need to support each aspect of a person to bring benefits to their whole well-being.

We want our residents to achieve the highest quality of life, and we also support family members so they can relax without worrying about their loved ones. Our programs and services inspire purpose, validate actions, and invigorate spirits. Visit us and you’ll understand we’re dedicated to providing high-quality memory care and Alzheimer’s care in Roswell, GA. 

24/7 Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Services

When your loved one becomes a resident of our memory care community, they get access to our onsite medical care services and team, including Medical Directors and nurses. The Medical Directors provide onsite assessments of each resident every week. 

Next comes a meeting between the Medical Directors, Resident Service Directors, and family members to discuss any concerns and make necessary changes to your loved one’s care plan. 

  • Our compassionate nursing team is available 24/7.
  • Our Medical Directors are fellowship-trained, certified geriatricians.
  • A physician trained in geriatric care creates a long-term care plan for your loved one.
  • A registered nurse (RN) provides general supervision, education, support, personal care, and intervention as needed.
  • A certified medication technician ensures your loved one gets the correct medication at the right time.
  • Our activities director designs programs to make sure residents stay active and engaged.
  • We also provide physical, occupational, speech, and psychiatric therapies as needed.

We work to meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of our Roswell residents so they can maintain a high quality of life. Our hope is your loved one will enjoy being a part of our memory care community.

Memory Care Daily Rhythm & Routine 

A group of seniors benefit from memory care activities.

Daily rhythms and routines are important to all of us and are a great source of comfort in times of change. In addition, active daily routines can support the circadian rhythm and improve residents’ moods, sleep habits, health, and energy levels. Engaging activities also minimize the risk of sundowner’s syndrome among older adults.

All the activities offered through our daily memory care and dementia care program in Roswell, GA, are designed to foster a playful spirit. Our functions are all about “fun.” 

The Morning Hours

Mornings begin with a cheerful wake-up. Our Morning Welcome Crew opens the curtains and blinds, greets your loved one, and offers coffee (decaf is available, too). The crew talks about the day’s schedule using colorful charts and listens to your loved one’s interests and preferences. Residents finish breakfast and then we guide or accompany them as needed to their chosen activities.

Morning memory care activities may include:

  • Accompanied walks around our beautifully landscaped grounds
  • Live entertainment, music, or pet visits
  • Aerobics, yoga, and other movement classes
  • Meditation and mindfulness classes/groups
  • Bowling, golf, or balloon volleyball in The Town Center
  • Bingo or trivia games
  • Gospel music or various devotional services located in our non-denominational chapel

Afternoon Activities

Residents enjoy a nutritious lunch then begin their afternoon activities or take a rest, depending on their needs. After lunch, your loved one may spend time at the daily Ice Cream Social in the Town Center. Many residents say this is their favorite part of the day.

Afternoon memory care activities may include:

  • Creative classes, including writing, drawing, painting, ceramics, handicrafts, etc.
  • Gardening in our herb and garden beds
  • Taking walks
  • Bird watching
  • Sitting on a bench or patio chair, enjoying the natural landscape
  • Special offerings that vary from day-to-day

The Evening Wind Down

Many Roswell residents choose to freshen up and head to the Town Center Tavern in the evening. Non-alcoholic beverages and light snacks are available here before residents eat dinner.

After dinner, our social coordinator hosts games, music and sing-a-longs, and other social activities often focused on a particular period or era. These themes form part of valuable reminiscence therapy. If your loved one wants to do something else, they can choose to go to the Theater for a musical, comedy, or classic movie.

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More About Programs & Meals

The Typical Day page on our website offers a simple way for you to learn more about our activities and their intended purpose as part of our memory care and dementia care services.

Memory and Dementia Care Activity Programs

Current research shows that meaningful, structured activities help focus and engage the mind while easing common symptoms of boredom and agitation. That’s why the Memory Center’s activity programs encourage residents’ social interactions in small and larger group formats. We also intentionally schedule activities between nutritious and delicious meals. 

Our activities and programs are typically centered around:

  • Music
  • Poetry & games
  • Art
  • Hobby-style activities
  • Cooking
  • Sports & physical activities
  • Social activities

Memory and Dementia Care Meal Plans

Our meals are research-based, too. Studies show that processed food increases the risk of dementia. Meanwhile, cutting back on processed foods and refined sugars brings many benefits. Positive dietary changes can slow cognitive decline, enhance neural function, and increase longevity in people with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

Our meals and snacks:

  • Mostly follow an anti-inflammatory, Mediterranean Diet
  • Focus on nutrient-dense, whole foods, including lots of fresh fruits and veggies and lean proteins 
  • Have a minimum amount of refined sugars and processed foods

Memory Care and Dementia Care in Roswell, GA

You need to keep your care options open when you’re dealing with memory loss or any type of dementia, whether it’s affecting yourself or a beloved family member. The regular senior living arrangements may not offer enough memory care services. You may not be able to live independently and you may need more help than you can get through more home care services. 

We’re confident your loved one will fare better living with us than they would in an assisted living community for seniors who don’t have memory concerns. That’s because our specially planned memory care facilities are designed to help people with Alzheimer’s and dementia thrive.  

If you live in Roswell, Georgia, you’re welcome to take a virtual tour or contact us for more information about how we can help you and your family flourish during a difficult time.

A Long Track Record for Helping

★★★★★

“I highly recommend The Memory Center and cannot say enough about the staff and employees who interact daily with the residents. The residents are encouraged to participate in various daily events and there are plenty of assistants to help them enjoy the activities.

The residents experience music, dancing, laughter, socializing, nature and a general feeling of contentment in a secure and happy environment.

The entire staff, from the director to the housekeepers can be found interacting with the residents. We are very pleased with the care our mother receives at The Memory Center.”

Kathy J.

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More Resources

Amenities

Our community design features four neighborhoods that surround a Town Center. Each residence has their own quiet and relaxing living room, dining room and full kitchen.

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Dining

Our approach to nutrition is research-based, adhering largely to the anti-inflammatory Mediterranean Diet.

Our emphasis is on nutrient-dense whole foods, which means plenty of fresh produce, lean proteins, and fewer refined and processed foods.

Learn more about each Memory Center location and their approach to dining.

See What Makes Us Different

Pricing

An individual’s needs can change by the day. The Memory Center staff provides necessary daily assistance without burdening you with monthly bill changes.

Our all-inclusive pricing can simplify your budget planning and finances.

Pricing

LATEST NEWS


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What Is Dementia Care?

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29
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How to Create a Memory Box for Seniors With Dementia

The Memory Center works closely with spouses and families to transition their loved ones into our memory care community. It is not always an easy transition but we are committed...

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15
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Memory Games for Seniors With Dementia

There was a time when researchers believed brains were more like concrete than elastic. That has changed as the result of enhanced brain imaging, proving an active brain is a...

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