Adult Day Centers

Adult day centers offer people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias the opportunity to be social and to participate in activities in a safe environment.

Benefits of day centers

Adult day centers offer benefits to both caregivers and people with dementia.

If you are a full-time caregiver, adult day centers can provide a much needed break. While the person with Alzheimer’s is at the center, you’ll have time to rest, run errands or finish other tasks. If you find yourself feeling guilty, ask yourself this, “If I wear myself out to the point of total exhaustion, what good will I be to the person with dementia?”

If you are a caregiver that works during the day, an adult day center can be very helpful as you try to balance a job with caregiving duties. Hours of service vary at each center, but some are open from seven to 10 hours per day. Some also may offer weekend and evening hours, and transportation and meals are often provided.

For people with Alzheimer’s and dementia, adult day centers provide a chance to be social and to participate in staffed activities such as music and exercise programs. Keep in mind that the person with dementia will need time to adjust to the experience of going to the center. Some people may resist going at first, but they often look forward to the visit after several weeks of attending, meeting people and joining in activities.


The services provided vary depending upon the center. Common types of services are listed below, as well as questions that may help you determine whether a specific day program fits your family’s needs. (Keep in mind that few adult day programs offer all of the services described, and not all of the services are necessary for a program to be of high quality.)
  • Counseling: The center may provide support services for people with dementia and their families. For example, they may offer guidance on outside resources and arrange for supportive care in the home.
  • Health services: If the person with Alzheimer’s requires medical services (i.e., insulin shots, help with medication, etc.) be sure to ask if staff provides medical assistance. Some centers also may provide blood pressure checks and physical, dental, foot, eye or ear examinations.
  • Nutrition: Does the center provide nutritious meals and snacks? Sample a meal to find out. If needed, ask if the center can accommodate a special diet or provide a culturally specific menu. Some centers also offer nutritional education programs.
  • Personal care: Centers may provide help with hairstyling, toileting, eating, showering and other personal care tasks.
  • Activities: Daily activities may include music, art, recreation, discussion and support groups. Ask what activities are offered for people with dementia.
  • Behavior management: Find out if the center is prepared to deal with behaviors associated with dementia. These many include wandering, incontinence, hallucinations, sexually inappropriate behavior or speech difficulties.
  • Therapy: Some centers help arrange for needed physical, occupational or speech therapy. They may have therapists onsite or on-call.
  • Special needs: Make sure the center can accommodate any special needs. For example, is the center equipped to deal with someone who uses a wheelchair, who is hearing or visually impaired, or who is handicapped in another way? Knowing about any service restrictions before using a center may help prevent problems.

Selecting a center

  • Learn about your options.
    Talk to your local Alzheimer’s Association about adult day centers in your area, ask other caregivers about their experiences, and call your local senior center or area agency on aging. You can also use our Community Resource Finder to find an adult day program near you.
  • Consider your needs.
    Adult day centers can vary. Consider which center offers the services that you and the person with dementia need.
  • Give the day center a chance.
    Consider using its services at least twice a week for a month before making a final decision. Occasional use won’t give you an accurate picture of how the center operates.
  • Re-evaluate care needs.
    At some point the person with Alzheimer’s may need more care than the center can provide. Center staff and support groups can help evaluate your needs for future care.

Alzheimer’s Care Schaumburg IL

Alzheimer’s Care Schaumburg IL

Alzheimer’s Car in Fort Myers FLIt’s not easy to witness a loved one going through some of the more significant symptoms and signs of Alzheimer’s disease. Going over to visit an aging parent who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s more than five years ago, he or she not recognizing you, or even talking about people who have been deceased for many years can be emotionally traumatizing for many individuals.

When loved ones begin talking about people who haven’t been around in many years, mentioning that they want to give them a call, it can be a difficult situation. They may have a disconnection with the current time and have no concept that their loved one has passed away a long time ago.

This creates a difficult situation for them as well as any caregiver working with them on a regular basis. What happens when the senior is picking up the phone and trying to dial a specific number? What happens when they are convinced that they absolutely must talk to this person before much time goes by?

Some people may try to lie and tell the individual that the person is away on a vacation. They might attempt to assuage the senior with Alzheimer’s and hope that they will forget this little episode before long.

So what happens when they pick up the phone to dial the number? If they happen to remember the phone number, this might require some quick thinking on the part of you or some other family member or caregiver who happens to be with them at that moment.

You’re confronted with a delicate situation to handle. Telling them the truth can cause confusion, anxiety, and potentially even a verbal or physical outburst. The path of least resistance is often the most tempting one to travel. What happens as the senior completes the dialing of that phone and receives a recording message that the number is no longer in service or somebody picks up on the other end and has never heard of that person?  That can lead to even more confusion, stress and anxiety.

The best way to deal with this particular type of situation is with honesty and tact. Focusing on redirection can also help, as long as there is a plan in place for redirecting the individual at that time.

Dealing with somebody with Alzheimer’s is a delicate situation at times and that’s why it’s beneficial to rely on the services of an experienced Alzheimer’s care provider.