This week’s question: 

How do I know when it’s the right time to consider placement? 


Moving a loved one to a care facility can be a difficult decision. There is no single “right time” to do so, because dementia affects every individual differently. Only caregivers and the family members involved in the decision-making process are able to decide what is best for everyone involved, but there are some factors that can help to determine whether moving to a care facility is appropriate.


Here are some conditions that, if present, can be an indication that an alternative living arrangement may be in the best interest for all concerned: 

The person with dementia:

  • Has become increasingly withdrawn and isolated.
  • Has been experiencing steadily deteriorating health.
  • Is unaware of their surroundings and has become increasingly confused.
  • Has become increasingly agitated, irritable and/or combative.
  • Wanders and/or becomes lost.
  • Is incontinent of bowel and bladder.
  • Is unable to feed, bathe, and/or dress self.
  • Is prone to falls.
  • Requires assistance with ambulation.
  • Has become bedridden.

The caregiver:

  • Is unable to socialize or take time for themselves.
  • Is physically unable to lift or transfer the patient.
  • Has difficulty sleeping and getting enough rest.
  • Must neglect other familial roles and friendships.
  • Is feeling stressed and exhausted, hopeless or helpless.
  • Is using alcohol or medications to cope.
  • Has frequent bouts of crying.
  • Experiences bursts of anger with no acceptable outlet.
  • Has become ill more than once in the past 6 months.

It is important to be aware and conscious of your options in order to make informed decisions regarding care. For this reason, there are also resources to assist you in choosing the right care facility for your family member. Some examples are community organizations as well as placement referral registry services that help caregivers find an appropriate home for their loved one. 


For referrals to a registry service, feel free to call Alzheimer’s Orange County at 844-435-7259.


Have questions concerning Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other memory issues? We have answers.

As part of our array of programs and services for local families affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia, Alzheimer’s Orange County offers a free telephone helpline to answer any questions you may have about the disease. Whether you are someone experiencing dementia or other memory problems, a caregiver, or simply have questions about the disease, our experts are here to provide you with the information, resources, and advice that you need.

Our very own Helpline Specialists join us on our blog series to answer the most frequently asked questions that they encounter from caregivers and their loved ones, as well as their solutions to common issues and difficulties you may be experiencing.

Have a question about Alzheimer’s & dementia, but don’t see it here? Be sure to contact Alzheimer’s Orange County’s Helpline at 844-HELP-ALZ (844-435-7259) and we will help. To see the other programs and resources that Alzheimer’s Orange County can offer to you and your loved ones, visit our website at