Each family is different when approaching the question: When is it the right time to place? Here are a few items to consider:
- Is it safe? Are the home setting and physical environment safe for the current and future needs of your loved one? Is the environment secure so your loved one does not wander off? Is the home set up to minimize falls and potential kitchen accidents?
- Are the caregivers qualified? Whether the caregivers are family members, spouses, friends or paid staff, the question needs to be honestly addressed.
- Caregiver Burnout: Caring for someone with dementia is mentally draining and physically exhausting. A caregiver must be alert, aware and insightful at all times. If a spouse or another family member is solely providing a majority of care, the situation is not sustainable and is ultimately dangerous. Caregiver burnout is a real problem. Over time, the caregiver’s physical and mental health will suffer.
- Social Engagement: Does your loved one socially interact with peers or family? Isolation may be a contributing factor to depression and dementia.
- What is the backup plan? Caregiving for someone with dementia is a 7-day-a-week, 24-hours-a-day commitment. What is plan B and C if the primary caregiver is unavailable?
- Is it the best-case scenario for all involved? Even if family members are close by, available and capable does not mean they are the optimum caregiver. When adopting a caregiver role, the risk of losing identities or roles as a wife, daughter or son is greater.
Everyone has a different tolerance and empathy factor when caring for a loved one. Sometimes good-intentioned caregivers end up with less than desirable outcomes. It should not be looked upon as a failure. We were not all born to be caregivers. For each endeavor and challenge, a right person for the job exists.
Take the time to look inward, talk with family members, consider all factors and desired outcomes. Find the right people, place, and environment for your loved one.
At Dolan Memory Care Homes, families participate—as much and as little as they want—in their loved one’s care. Dolan caregivers are referred to as CarePartners. You partner with us for the care of your loved one, but let us do the heavy lifting.
““To find a place like this that you are okay with. It’s a huge sense of relief. It has been a huge peace of mind for all of us.”
– Daughter, Dolan Care Resident