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Read more from Juliet Holt KlingerThe Weight of Care and the Lightness of Being a Care Partner Respite Care: Can I Walk Away?
Caring for the Caregiver: Respite Care Provides Relief
BRENTWOOD, Tenn., Nov. 15, 2018 – When Sherrie Matteson’s mother, Margie Mora, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, time suddenly became a bigger concern than it ever had been in their lives. Time was now the most important factor in several aspects of their lives: quality time together; time it would require Matteson to care for mother; eventually, time to look for a long-term care provider and then the time that provider would take to care for Mora. When the weight of the clock ticking felt like more than Matteson could bear, she turned to respite care for reprieve. As part of National Alzheimer’s Disease and Caregiver Awareness Month, Brookdale is helping other caregivers find the same relief Matteson found, with respite care.
“Those who care for their loved ones living with Alzheimer’s or other dementias often neglect taking time for their own needs,” said Juliet Holt Klinger, who leads Dementia Care at Brookdale Senior Living. “They take on the role of primary care partner but don’t recognize the importance of providing care for themselves, too. Often times, they don’t realize they have respite care options available to them.”
Respite care offers short-term relief to caregivers allowing them time to recharge, take a vacation or just a short break. Respite care is provided in a memory care community or through services available at home.
Brookdale offers a wide range of personalized living services that give caregivers the option to have professionals come to their home and provide as little or as much assistance as needed. Rates and locations for these services vary. Brookdale also offers home health services that are covered by insurance or Medicare, if the patient qualifies for such services.
Personalized living services may include:
- Housekeeping services to help with laundry, shopping or meal planning and prepping
- Companionship services
- Some personal care services
Home health services may include:
- Skilled nursing and therapy services for medication management, medical monitoring, mobility or safety training
Brookdale memory care communities offer overnight respite care, which allows caregivers to leave their loved one in an environment tailored for residents living with dementia for a few days or weeks. Rates vary and are not covered by insurance or Medicare, although long-term care insurance typically covers this service.
When Matteson realized it was no longer safe to leave her mother alone while she traveled, she arranged for respite care at a memory care community.
“Respite care took the load off caregiving,” said Matteson. “I felt good because I knew she was in good hands.”
Matteson credits respite care with helping her know what to look for in long-term care. She learned that respite care offers the opportunity to check out a memory care community before a loved one moves in. Plus, it gives people living with dementia a chance to get used to new surroundings before it becomes their home.
“Respite care helped me learn a lot about caregiving and what works for my mom,” said Matteson. “After using respite care, I knew I had three main concerns for my mom: I want her to have dignity, engagement and a holistic approach to life. I interviewed five communities before deciding that Brookdale Westlake Village was the best home for my mom.”
Respite care for those living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias provides many benefits to the one caring for a loved one as well.
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“Respite care is important for the parent and the caregiver. It gave me time to recharge and gave my mom the opportunity to socialize with other seniors. I can’t recommend it enough,” said Matteson.
If you are interested in respite care at a Brookdale memory care community, call communities in your area to learn more about what they offer. If you are interested in home health or personalized living, contact Brookdale to see what is available in your area. To learn more about Brookdale call one of our national senior living advisor’s at 855-350-3800 or visit Brookdale.com.
About Brookdale Senior Living
Brookdale Senior Living Inc. is the leading operator of senior living communities throughout the United States. The Company is committed to providing senior living solutions primarily within properties that are designed, purpose-built and operated to provide the highest-quality service, care and living accommodations for residents. Brookdale operates independent living, assisted living, and dementia-care communities and continuing care retirement centers, with approximately 961 communities in 46 states and the ability to serve approximately 93,000 residents as of September 30, 2018. Through its ancillary services program, the Company also offers a range of home health, hospice and outpatient therapy services.
Dana Schroering, 615-564-8543, firstname.lastname@example.org
* According to the Alzheimer’s Association