If your family has decided that it’s time your loved one with memory loss received the professional care and support offered in a memory care community, then your search for the right place has already begun. While community websites and internet reviews may provide some valuable information, the only way to really know what a community is like is to experience it in person.
“You can’t overestimate the importance of personally visiting a community,” says Jimmie Fay Griffin, Executive Director of Clarity Pointe™ Tallahassee, a memory care assisted living community in Tallahassee, Florida. “Pictures can’t do a community justice, especially when you’re considering a memory care community. Loved ones with memory loss should experience comfortable surroundings, easy-to-navigate hallways, and a sense of peace and calm you could never judge with a photograph.
“Additionally, some of the most important deciding factors about a community have to be experienced in person: the overall atmosphere and the caregiving team. When you visit a community, you get to really sense what it would be like to live there, and you can talk to the actual people who will be caring for and interacting with your loved one every day.”
As you prepare to visit your top choices of memory care communities, you should have a general idea of what you can expect and how to make the most out of your visit.
What to Expect When You Tour a Community
Unless you plan to visit a community multiple times, you’ll want to make the most out of your visit. You can expect to tour the community, meet someone on the leadership team as well as caregivers, sit in on some of their programming and check out their dining services. While each community may structure their visits differently, here are a few must-see items for any community visit:
- Tour of resident apartments
- Tour of main common areas, including special amenities (salon, fitness center, gardens, etc.)
- Tour of the dining area – Visit during mealtime to try the food and see how staff interacts with residents.
- Specialized programming – Ask to participate in an activity.
- Meeting with the Executive Director or Community Relations Director
- Conversations with caregivers
If there’s something you definitely want to see or do during your visit, be sure to ask about it when you schedule. Give the community a chance to prepare to meet your needs if your request is beyond the norm for them.
Things to Look for During Your Visit
In addition to the major highlights of a community tour, you’ll want to pay attention to some of the minor details of a community that will make a big difference in your loved one’s experience there. The Alzheimer’s Association® also offers a helpful checklist to use during community visits. Here are some of the highlights:
- Community is easy to navigate
- Areas are secure, yet spacious enough to allow independence
- Dining area is pleasant, and staff are available to assist with meals
- Food is appetizing and offered at regular times
- Residents appear comfortable and relaxed, as well as clean and well-groomed
- Planned activities are available seven days a week
- Activities can be personalized for residents’ interests and abilities
- Activities are specially designed to enhance cognitive stimulation and daily function
- Community offers local transportation
- Care planning sessions are held regularly
- Staff are trained in dementia care
- Personal care and assistance is provided with respect and dignity
- Registered nurse is on site 24/7
- Staff can handle challenging dementia symptoms
- Families are able to participate in care planning
- Visiting hours are convenient for your family
- Continuing care is available if your loved one’s needs advance
- Community culture fits your loved one’s personality
These are only a few of the most important details to observe as you visit a memory care community. Feel free to view the Alzheimer’s Association®’s full checklist and even add your own items as they come to mind.
With some preparation and awareness of what to expect during a memory care visit, you and your loved one will be ready to begin the search for the best community for them.
Welcoming Residents and Families
“At Clarity Pointe Tallahassee,” says Griffin, “we love showing families and potential residents our memory care community, purposely built for those with memory loss. From our calming interior design to secure outdoor spaces, we offer residents a place to truly call home. We’re happy to give guests an authentic look at how we approach memory care, from our strong leadership to our everyday care techniques. We’ve designed an effective, compassionate approach to caring for those with memory loss – and we’re excited to share it with you!”
If you would like to learn more about Clarity Pointe Tallahassee or schedule a personal tour, contact us today!
Clarity Pointe™ … Our Difference is Clear
Clarity Pointe™’s Specialized Memory Care “Living” Neighborhoods are truly changing lives for those with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias – and for those who love them. At Clarity Pointe, our mission is to ensure our residents lead connected and rewarding lives.
Opening in January 2018, Clarity Pointe Tallahassee is unlike other providers that offer a secure memory care wing in a skilled nursing or assisted living center. Clarity Pointe Tallahassee will offer four free-standing, purpose-built memory care communities that are solely and entirely dedicated to memory care assisted living. Our communities blend luxurious surroundings with specialized care that is individualized to each resident and delivered by a compassionate, expert team of professionals.
We stay current on the latest trends and advancements in Alzheimer’s care and implement them into our residents’ care plans. Always moving forward, we combine the latest in evidence-based programming with luxurious, residential living and compassionate respectful care.
For each of our residents, we offer a life that is engaging, fulfilling, inspiring and meaningful.