Don’t refer to Memory & Company as “Adult Day Care”
Memory & Company is a Club and Respite Resort. Although this term is used comfortably in other parts of the world, here, “Day Care” may offend someone who considers it infantilizing.
We welcome adults of all ages, not “just old people”
Memory loss doesn’t just affect the oldest of the old. People as young as 50 attend our club who are living with memory loss.
Many of our Members are active, intelligent, physically healthy people who come to us to slow their memory loss. They want to remain in their homes with their families longer, and out of institutional care.
Don’t overwhelm with too much information
Often, Care Partners make the mistake of telling the person they care for every little detail of the day. For someone living with memory loss, this may be overwhelming and may lead them to shut down.
If multiple steps and new tasks overwhelm them, break tasks down into small steps and keep things simple. For example, instead of saying, “We’re going to Memory & Company for breakfast. Let’s get dressed,” start by saying, “Let’s get dressed.” Once they are dressed and ready, then say, “It’s time to go out for breakfast.” Then, simply drive to Memory & Company.
This approach is not about tricking them, it’s about keeping things manageable due to their disability.
Ask a professional to assist you
If you and the person you care for are not seeing eye-to-eye on attending Memory & Company, you may want to reach out to a third party for help. They may be willing to attend if their doctor, social worker or even a good friend offers the suggestion.
Once through the door, he or she is often happy to be here. Some doctors have even written a prescription to Memory & Company because we are better than any medication on the market in helping slow memory loss.
Understand what is important to them
Do they like to be pampered? Are they social? Do they like to give back to the community? Do they enjoy fitness and brain exercises? Memory & Company offers a variety of programs and activities to suit all our Members’ likes and needs.
Talk to us so we can ensure that they attend on the days and times their favourite activities are happening. Also, they will be more likely to attend if they know they are going to do something they enjoy.
Start with a short visit (2 – 4 hours)
If the person you care for is hesitant, start with a shorter visit. Come just for lunch, even a spa service and afternoon program.
Ease them into the Club so they don’t feel overwhelmed or abandoned.
Take them out for lunch, or for a cup of tea or coffee
Let us know in advance so we can expect you both for lunch, or simply a tea or coffee.
Tell them you are visiting a new club you found and you wanted their opinion about it. That way they feel like they are part of the decision-making, and that their opinion counts.
Keep in mind that they may not remember having attended the Club, and may have to be reintroduced the first few visits.
You may hear complaints
It may take some time for the person you care for to adjust to attending Memory & Company. You may hear some complaints at first.
They may complain up until the time they walk through the door, but by the time they settle in, they are happy and social.
At the end of the day, even if they were engaged and thoroughly enjoyed their day, they may have forgotten everything they did and say they did nothing. They may also not be able to articulate their day in conversation.
Caring for people living with memory loss is about the moment and about the joy we bring them at that moment. We will be happy to provide videos and pictures of the person you care for to assure you they had an engaging day.
It often takes a few visits for one to feel comfortable in a new environment and new routine.
Be patient during the adjustment period.
Do not expect them to jump at the idea on your first announcement.
You may need to continue encouraging them to attend, as they have memory loss and may not recall the conversation you had the day, or even minutes before. They may not remember they attend weekly at first.
Set a routine
The more often they attend Memory & Company, the more routine it will become. Once a routine is set, visits will become much easier.
As well, the more days you attend, the more benefit you will see in building relationships, and improvement in cognitive and physical fitness.