“Memory Care” is the term that covers exactly as it sounds. Our memory needs some care, some of us may find fleeting moments of solid memories and lucidity while others may never experience that feeling again. In all of the situations, the pain and hardship are more challenging for those who love the one with the memory impairment than the one who is inflicted by the impairment.
Across the industry there are different belief systems on how to work with those with dementia or other memory-related impairments. Teepa Snow is one of the leading educators on dementia and the care that accompanies it. She has used her over 40-years of knowledge to create a “GEMS” model scale to help caregivers better understand those they serve. Whether it’s someone who “like a particle trapped in amber, (I) am caught in a moment of time” or someone who “as the deep red of a ruby masks detail, (my) obvious losses make my remaining abilities harder to notice.” We all have a place, and each person is precious, valuable, and unique. When given the right environment, all gems can shine.
Memory Care programs are typically either stand-alone communities or adjoined with other programs inside the community. Memory Care units are typically smaller than Assisted Living units to encourage increased participation in the social happenings around the community. Studies show that increased activity has a correlation to reduction of medication for behavior management.