When your loved one is diagnosed with dementia, the ripple effect of this news influences multiple decisions and plans, in both the patients’ life and yours. Beyond the initial sadness or concern you and your loved one feel, there is so much learning to do. Dementia is a progressive disease that individuals can live with for 8 – 15 years. The key factor in determining how the years living with dementia are spent, depends largely on the understanding of the disease, and the plan of care that you create, follow, and adapt. 

  • No two cases of dementia are the same, so it is important to know that planning for care is not a one-size fits-all solution. 
  • Every person is different, and pre-existing health concerns, environmental factors, access to resources, quality caregivers, and the type of care received (in-home, live-in, etc.), all play a huge role. 

 Symptoms of dementia can vary greatly depending on the type or stage of dementia, as well. This is an easy guide to help you visualize a framework for budgeting care for your loved one. 

Understanding dementia as occurring in 3 main stages – mild, moderate, and severe helps us build a framework to see the progression of dementia in terms of time, care, and symptom progression. It’s also a great tool to help family members plan and budget for their loved one’s care. Since patients with dementia tend to weaken mentally, emotionally, and physically over time, it’s prudent to budget for care knowing that it will typically be more costly and time-consuming over the years. 

The table below is a helpful way to understand the amount of care required by the different types of dementia in the varying stages of the disease progression. 

It is important to note that these descriptions are general indicators or examples of the symptoms present with dementia, they are *not* the rule and are by no means the norm for every patient. 

With this information you can formulate an idea of how to budget for your loved one’s care over the lifetime of their disease. Support for a family member with dementia isn’t simply a one-time expense or commitment. It varies and increases, and it requires you, as the primary caregiver, to understand how the disease will progress and the amount and type of support needed. 

  • On average, the cost for hourly caregivers ranges from $25-$35 depending on the expertise and amount of support required. The average is approximately $27 per hour. 
  • The cost for live-in caregivers is less at $16 – 20/ hour, and averages around $17.75 per hour. Live-in care is more economical but does include the cost of any modifications to the patient’s home so that the caregiver has a space of their own. 
  • These prices are approximate guidelines and evolve dynamically based on caregiver availability, overall shift schedule, location, and market conditions.

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The journey of care is a deeply personal one. It is important to align yourself and work with subject matter experts who understand dementia, it’s multiple symptoms and how they present, who can offer you true support and candid guidance to help you make the best decision for your loved one – both in terms of care and finances. Care Mountain can connect you with the right caregiver to meet the needs of your loved one, and your family’s expectations for their care.

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