Making the choice to send your loved one to a residential care facility can be a challenge. Statistics show that an estimated 5.4 million Americans suffer from Alzheimer's, resulting in 18.1 billion hours in unpaid care provided by loved ones.
If you are currently caring for someone suffering from dementia, here are three signs you can watch for to help you determine if it's time for your loved one to enter an assisted living facility.
1. Your loved one is exhibiting signs of anger or aggression.
It's not uncommon for those suffering from dementia to become angry or aggressive over time. These behavioral changes are typically in response to growing physical discomfort or environmental factors that are beyond the individual's control.
If you find that your loved one's aggressive and angry outbursts are becoming more and more frequent, this could be a sign that an assisted living facility is your best option. These facilities specialize in caring for those with dementia, and can provide a safe and comfortable environment for your loved one.
2. The care needs of your loved one lie outside your skill set.
As dementia progresses, the care needs of your loved one will progress as well. Individuals suffering from dementia may require a level of care that you are not qualified to provide.
Although you may be able to see to the personal needs of your loved one, their medical and behavioral needs may be better addressed by professionals with training in these areas. Moving your loved one to an assisted living facility as their care needs escalate ensures that they will have access to the support they need on a daily basis.
3. Your own health is beginning to suffer as a consequence of caring for your loved one.
While you might not view the care of a loved one suffering from dementia as a burden, it's important to recognize the strain that being a caregiver can place on your own health. Caregiver stress is a common among those providing full-time care for dementia patients.
If you find that you are feeling overwhelmed, tired, or losing interest in activities that you once enjoyed, these could be signs of caregiver stress. Opting to move your loved one to an assisted living facility will help you avoid the depression and anxiety that often accompany caregiver stress.
Watching for signs that it is time for your loved one to move to an assisted living facility can be an essential part of providing proper care for the individual suffering from dementia in your life. For more information, contact United Methodist Village or a similar location.