Finding the perfect care home…
When choosing for your own family, there is no such thing as a “perfect” care home. If life was perfect, a care home wouldn’t be needed. But sometimes it’s the only solution to a problem when someone can’t look after themselves. Family, home carers and friends can’t always cover the 24-hour care that is needed. So how do you pick the best possible home?
Posh or comfy? Though designers do their best to make new homes look like a five-star hotel, that’s not always what people are comfortable with. So, what’s right depends on the person who is going to live there, not the rest of the family. Make sure they can influence the decision if possible. Don’t be put off by a building that is a bit knocked about. It is the knowledge, skills and attitudes of the people who work there that makes the biggest difference. Posh AND comfy is great, but focus on the way staff respect their residents more than worrying about furnishings.
Clean or tacky? You can’t completely ignore the surroundings, though. It must look and feel clean, and even smell good. Of course, anyone can have an embarrassing moment caused by an odour, but care homes should have nice air quality virtually all of the time. If the place smells unpleasant continuously, that is unacceptable. It’s not necessary with modern detergents, carpet cleaning, air circulation, and good care.
Tidy or messy? There is a current fashion to festoon the walls with entertaining interactive objects, murals and themed pictures. This is better than a cold, clinical décor, but for some people with dementia too much clutter is distracting and uncomfortable. Find out if the staff use this stuff with the residents, or if it is just window dressing. Pictures of the locality a hundred years ago are of limited value, if I’m not from here. I’d maybe rather have pictures of Elvis.
Fundamentally location and cost are the biggest issues. If you want to know more you can read chapter 14 in “Dementia the One Stop Guide”
Dementia the One Stop Guide https://profilebooks.com/dementia-the-one-stop-guide.html