There are about 296 memory care facilities in New York. This number can change due to demand for new memory care communities and sometimes as older ones close, but memory care communities have the critical job of providing a safe place where seniors experiencing memory loss can find the support they need.

Secure, Supportive Communities

Memory care communities strive to be fully secure and supportive. Security is especially important for people with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia who often tend to wander and get lost. Most facilities have locked doors that staff members and visitors can open with a code so that residents remain safely inside. Outdoor areas are fenced and gated. Staff members supervise residents 24/7 in person and through video monitoring. Memory care communities also feature emergency call systems and other high-tech devices so that seniors can receive help when they need it.

Caregivers in memory care communities are specially trained to interact with people suffering from memory loss. They provide help with daily living activities, medication, meals and housekeeping, but they also gently guide residents and work to counteract difficult behaviors. They’re aware that when a resident lashes out, it’s often a sign of frustration and confusion, and they use the latest research and techniques to establish relationships and defuse situations with respect and gentleness.

Sociable, Enjoyable Communities

While memory care communities provide security and support, they also focus on socialization and enjoyment. Staff members promote socialization among residents and between residents and their caregivers and family members. Interactions with others are especially important for people dealing with memory loss, so seniors are invited to spend time together in common areas, receive visitors and maintain and develop relationships as much as possible.

Most communities also provide a full calendar of activities to promote socialization as well as enjoyment and cognitive function. Residents gather for games, music, entertainment and puzzles. They may go on group outings, welcome pet visitors or interact with young people from the community. Some communities offer cooking sessions, crafts and movies, and nearly all provide ways to engage in reminiscing and in physical exercise. This kind of programming keeps seniors as busy and engaged as possible so that they find purpose and meaning in life.