Memory Care Unit

Memory care refers to specialized settings offering stepped-up services for people with Alzheimer's or other types of dementia. Demand is rising for this type of care – usually found within assisted living facilities and nursing homes – despite the premium cost. If you're thinking about memory care for a family member, here's what to consider.

Secured units, alarm devices and enclosed outdoor areas to keep people safe from wandering are only part of the picture. Staff members should be trained to understand the needs of people with dementia, who can lose the ability to communicate in normal ways yet still respond to verbal cues and sensory stimulation. Good memory care engages residents and gives them space to be active, promotes their physical and emotional well-being and doesn't overly rely on medication.

The type of memory care that is best suited for someone depends on how far dementia has progressed and how symptoms manifest. In early stages, people can do well in memory care communities. But eventually, they may need services within a facility.

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