Their plea pursues me. “I wanna go home. Can you help me?” They try to get out. They look for a door, an elevator to open. They wander out, and sometimes get lost. They are searching for a home that no longer exists. They are the 5.4 million with Alzheimer’s* whose disabled mind has robbed them of the familiarity that once felt safe.
This quote comes from a recent post by Marguerite Manteau-Rao at the Huffington Post. Marguerite is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and CEO of Presence Care Project. Her objective is to educate caregivers on effectively caring for those with various forms of Dementia.
Her article Living With Alzheimer’s, Looking for a Home lists 7 important areas to consider when seeking housing for loved ones that suffer dementia and can no longer live on their own:
Home is a refuge from the outside world, a protected place where we can let our guard down. Once inside, we need not worry about watching our stuff, or worrying about our safety. We do not let strangers in unless we want to.
At home, we know what to expect. Same smells, lived-in furniture, people, sounds, daily routines — these provide us with the reassurance of predictability, and the continuity to thread our sense of self.
Old slippers, easy chair, temperature just right, warm PJs, cozy corner by the fireplace — these are some of the ingredients of comfort to be found in our home.
Within the walls of home, we can do whatever we want, whenever we want. We can decide to put on some music or not. We can go to the fridge and fix ourselves a snack anytime. We can set our own rules. We can be ourselves.
Home is a place for close bonds with a few loved ones. Spouses, children, friends, relatives, neighbors, pets, satisfy the relational beings that we are. We don’t feel alone.
Only at home can we indulge our unique preferences, our favorite tea, our music, our comfort food, our preferred TV show… Folks at home know what we like. Home is personal.
Closely identified with home are the chores that we get to participate in, whether actively or as a witness. Grocery shopping, planning meals, cooking, doing laundry, cleaning house, taking out garbage, tending our gardens…
As your consultant, Assisted Living Options will help you find elder care, such as an assisted living or adult family home, that meets these objectives.We value these characteristics of “home” and incorporate them in our decisions regarding which homes we will represent.