‘End of Life’ Planning Should Include Assisted Living, and It May Begin Part-Time Now, Too!

As a person heads toward those golden years of life, there’s often an increase in health related challenges they often face. When the diagnosis involves a terminal illness or other condition, it’s often referred to as ‘end-of-life.’ Elder care is a topic many families should discuss as early as possible.

Some seniors may be dealing with dementia, which includes Alzheimer’s. Around the time of diagnosis, though, the senior is often able to tend to his or her own basic care, for the most part. They generally need some assistance or reminders of things to do throughout the day, but beyond that, they are relatively self-sufficient.

As the disease progresses, however, the challenges are going to increase. Sometimes dramatically. This can place not only increasing pressure on their family members — who are often primary caregivers — but also the senior, especially when they lose track of where they are, what they were doing, and who’s supporting them.

Assisted living can be a great option for many aging seniors to consider, and it doesn’t have to start out as full-time. More and more assisted living communities are providing respite care services or short-term and part-time stay options.


How equipped would assisted living be to handle end-of-life care?

Assisted Living Daphne, AL: End of Life Planning

Assisted Living Daphne, AL: End of Life Planning

To be honest, that would depend on the facility. Some facilities are going to be limited in the kind of support they may offer residents, especially as it pertains to significant health issues or end-of-life care.

Yet, for an elder care option like a memory care facility, this could be a wonderful consideration for somebody dealing with dementia. The senior may very well be fully capable of doing most things for themselves at this stage in their life and have no interest in uprooting everything about themselves (just yet), but a few overnight stays or a couple of days a week can help them not only get comfortable with the environment, the layout, the residents, and the staff, but the longer they build emotional connections with staff members at any type of elder care option, the better it will be for them in the future.


How does familiarity help?

In the coming years, a person with Alzheimer’s, for example, may very well forget the people around them. This can cause confusion, frustration, and intense anxiety. Family and friends may react to verbal or physical aggression with shock, dismay, or even outbursts of their own.

Experienced staff members have plenty of strategies, skills, and knowledge at their disposal to help calm most situations down or, at the very least, to keep the senior safe.

But, also, if an aging person has a memory gap, doesn’t recognize their surroundings or the people with them, repeating certain phrases, mannerisms, and so forth from a staff member who has worked with this individual for months or even years can bring comfort back to the senior, even before they remember where they are and who those people happen to be.

Relying on assisted living for end-of-life care is a great option that doesn’t always have to be full-time, at least not right away.

If you or an aging loved one are considering a move to an Assisted Living facility near Daphne, AL, contact Ashbury Manor Specialty Care and Assisted Living at 251-317-3017.

About Cindy Johnson

Ashbury Manor’s Administrator since 2008, Cindy Johnson is a long-time expert in the assisted living field. Prior to her arrival at Ashbury Manor, Cindy managed acquisitions and crisis management for existing and new larger senior care project developments for eleven years. As regional manager for an Oregon-based assisted living management company, Cindy was directly responsible for operations for five 50-65 bed assisted living facilities. As manager during the transition to new ownership, Cindy reorganized internal operations and conducted leadership training for Executive Directors. As a result of her management and expertise, one of the company’s facilities (in Ocala, Florida) received a deficiency-free survey, resulting in the lifting of a moratorium on operation.

A nurse for 36 years, senior care has always been Cindy’s passion. Desiring to work more closely with residents, Cindy became a Category II Administrator in 2005. As Ashbury Manor’s Administrator, Cindy understands the complexities associated with dementia and cognitive impairment and she has fallen in love with seniors with dementia or cognitive impairment and their families.

Cindy is Treasurer of the local “Senior Coalition” chapter. She enjoys mentoring new candidates who want to become administrators.

As a 16-bed facility, with Cindy's training and experience, our residents and their families can be sure Ashbury Manor’s carefully selected staff provides the expertise of a larger facility while maintaining the individualized personal care of a small special needs home.
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