Caregiving for a loved one is an incredibly rewarding job, but it’s also mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausting at the same time. 

Caregivers put their lives on hold to make sure their loved one is well taken care of, driving them to all of their medical appointments, overseeing their medication management, and helping them keep up with their personal hygiene. Caregiving requires constant effort and attention, although caregivers are always happy to do whatever it takes to make sure their loved one is as happy and healthy as possible.

But caregivers also have to go to work. They have appointments of their own to go to. And they also deserve some time off for themselves. What should caregivers do in these circumstances? The solution? Adult day care programs!

Adult day care is a coordinated program of professional social and health services in a community-based setting for older adults with a variety of diagnoses, which include both cognitive and physical impairments. Not only will caregivers have peace of mind that their loved one is being taken care of in a safe space outside of the home, but adult day care programs also give older adults the opportunity to socialize to alleviate feelings of isolation and loneliness. Additionally, one study even found that dementia patients and caregivers both slept better after the individual was at adult day care.

You may have a few questions about adult day care services, and I hope to answer some of those questions below.

When Should You Consider an Adult Day Care Program?

In addition to providing one-off or short-term care when a caregiver is unavailable, there are other reasons why adult day care might be the best option for your loved one. If you notice any of these signs, it might be time to look into a program:

  • Your loved one is unable to structure their daily activities
  • Your loved one is vocal about feeling lonely and isolated from others
  • Your loved one is experiencing depression or anxiety
  • Your loved one is having trouble starting and focusing on tasks
  • Your loved one doesn’t appear to be safe on their own at all anymore

How Can You Find the Program That’s Best for Your Loved One?

As you begin looking around your area for a center that provides adult day care services, there are a number of different things you can look for to narrow down your search:

  • How long has the facility been in operation?
  • What types of accreditation, licenses, and certifications do they hold?
  • What are their hours? Are they flexible with pick ups and drop offs?
  • What is the ratio to employees and attendees?

After you answer these questions, you’ll want to go and check out the remaining centers in person before choosing the program you want to enroll your loved one in. Here are some things to keep in mind on your tour:

  • Is the facility clean?
  • Is the center wheelchair accessible?
  • Are the restrooms conveniently located close to where attendees will spend their time?
  • Is the furniture sturdy and comfortable?

Adult day care programs are a great way to support your caregiving responsibilities while also giving your loved one access to fun and exciting opportunities. If you’re located in the New York area, consider looking into Cold Spring Hills Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation’s adult day care services.