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What Is the Difference Between Memory Care and Dementia Care?

a young man visits his grandfather in his memory care program in assisted living

Seniors affected by dementia face significant challenges in day-to-day life. Your loved one may be able to meet these challenges on their own. However, they may also need the extensive support provided by a senior living facility. Senior programs designed for those affected by dementia are often known as memory care programs. You may also see them referred to as dementia care programs. Is there a difference between the two? And if so, which option will best suit your loved one’s current needs? Contact Parkway Place at 281.305.1846 today for more information and to learn how we can help.

Understanding Dementia

There is no single illness that goes by the name of dementia. Instead, experts use the term to describe any condition that impairs the ability to:

  • Think
  • Remember
  • Make judgments or decisions
  • Lead a functional day-to-day routine

The number one source of these kinds of problems is Alzheimer’s disease. Other conditions with similar effects include Lewy body dementia and vascular dementia. They also include frontotemporal dementia and mixed dementia. Classic dementia is not curable. However, your loved one may have an underlying condition that triggers reversible dementia symptoms.

What Is Senior Memory Care?

Memory care is a senior living option for older adults affected by dementia. It features services that help your loved one meet dementia’s many challenges. As in assisted living programs, these services include support for daily living activities such as dressing, bathing, and eating.

But memory care also has some unique features. For example, special measures are taken to protect your loved one’s health and safety at all times. Such measures include oversight that helps prevent falls and other accidents. They also include monitoring methods that stop your loved one from wandering unattended. Crucially, all staff members have experience working with seniors affected by dementia.

One of the goals of senior memory care is helping your loved one preserve their functional abilities. A variety of activities can help support this goal, including:

  • Exercise modified to their needs
  • Jigsaw puzzles and other brain games
  • Stimulating trips and outings
  • Projects such as knitting or scrapbooking
  • Assisted meal prep and cooking

Plenty of opportunity is also provided to socialize and reminisce.

Are Memory Care for Seniors and Dementia Care the Same Thing?

Memory care for seniors and dementia care sometimes refer to different things. However, they may also refer to the same kinds of services. That’s true because the terms senior memory care and senior dementia care are sometimes used as synonyms.

When Dementia Care Is Different

What does dementia care mean when it’s not a synonym for senior memory care? As a rule, it refers to services provided to seniors who are in the later stages of a dementia-related illness. At this point, it’s still important to preserve your loved one’s independent function for as long as possible—however, part of the focus shifts toward easing the symptoms of the condition affecting them.

For that reason, medical treatment plays a more significant role in the process. This is important because the symptoms of late dementia can be debilitating. In addition to medical care, your loved one will likely need more extensive forms of daily living support.

Find Out More About Senior Memory Care and Dementia Care at Parkway Place

Have more questions about the differences between memory services and dementia care? Parkway Place can answer them. We can also help clarify which option is more appropriate for your loved one.

Parkway Place features extensive memory care for seniors. With our support, your loved one can continue to lead a fulfilling routine in a nurturing environment. To find out more about the services available in our specialized program, call us today at 281.305.1846. You can also contact us through our online form.