Dementia, and specifically Alzheimer's, is a serious, growing problem. In fact, 1 out of every 10 adults over the age of 65 has Alzheimer’s dementia. As Brooklyn’s senior population continues to grow (15.67% growth between 2013 and 2018), so does the concern about aging and the risk of cognitive impairment.
In Brooklyn, the number of deaths for those 65 and older caused or partly caused by Alzheimer’s disease rose by 48.61% between 2013 and 2018. To put that in perspective, the number of deaths from all causes for that same age group only increased by 3.41%, showing that Alzheimer’s is a growing concern in the region. Overall, the percentage of seniors’ deaths related to Alzheimer’s is lower than the rest of the nation (3.17% in Brooklyn vs. 6.46% in the U.S.).
To help families and caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s or other forms of cognitive impairment find the support and care their loved ones need, we applied our unique methodology and spent dozens of hours researching senior living communities in Brooklyn. In addition to an overview of the communities’ best features, this guide highlights the best memory care facilities in the city, and gives information about pricing, types of care provided, residents’ reviews, and more.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 83% of all caregivers are unpaid family members, relatives, or other friends, and nearly half of all care is for older adults with some form of dementia. Caregiving, especially when it involves Alzheimer’s or dementia, is extremely exhausting and time-consuming, leading many caregivers to feel isolated and overwhelmed.
As a loved one continues to progress through the stages of dementia and his or her cognitive abilities continue to decline, behavioral problems, safety, and general care often become more than one caregiver can handle. This is when it’s important to find extra help, and residential facilities that have specialized memory care programs are often the best solution.
In addition to providing a safe environment, memory care programs seek to delay or halt cognitive decline while providing the opportunity for a social, independent lifestyle.
To choose the best memory care facilities in Brooklyn, our team of researchers started by using our unique methodology to develop a list of contenders. We further refined the list in the next phase of our process by completing hands-on research for each one of the companies that we developed. Finally, we compiled online reviews from residents and families and wrote summaries of each facility that made it through our selection process. Overall, our team:
Atria Riverdale helps residents with memory care and assisted living through its Engage Life program and a forward-thinking approach to Alzheimer's care. Its team of skilled staff offers individualized care to encourage residents to connect and pursue new interests. Classes include daily fitness, art and music programs. A private outdoor terrace is decorated with flower pots and seating near a fireplace, so residents can enjoy the Brooklyn air in a secure environment. Residents can also take advantage of the on-site bistro and pub or visit the beauty salon for a trim as needed. With three dining options, including a full-service restaurant, residents are served three meals a day.
Family members value the professional staff and home-like environment. One says, "My mom is at Atria and she's very happy there. You can have a very small studio or a very large one-bedroom apartment. I think the people that work there are wonderful. They are very warm and engaging."
Brookdale Emerson emphasizes active living among its residents by offering a wide array of activities. From bingo to technology classes to a community poker club, there is no shortage of options for residents to get involved. They can also take advantage of weekly housekeeping services and transportation services. Memory care is focused on the Daily Path approach, which comprises six daily programs that underscore skills maintenance. Those receiving memory care are also encouraged to engage with others in the community so that they can rely on social interactions as another layer of support.
Family members love the staff's professionalism and the well-maintained grounds replete with an enclosed courtyard. They also highlight the array of communal spaces available to residents. Of this, one writes, "I thought the community was very well laid out. ... There's a whole floor laid out for medical, exercise, and library. ... They really provide everything that you need."
Nestled in a peaceful wooded area of New Jersey, Brookdale Paramus helps enhance the lives of residents with Alzheimer's and dementia through its person-centered approach to memory care. The community's philosophy centers on creating a home-like environment where residents feel a sense of belonging, purpose and individuality. Daily activities are designed to strengthen residents' cognitive capabilities through programs such as arts and crafts, music, and physical and occupational therapy. Residents can also relax or go for a walk in the courtyard and garden. Caregivers are available at all times and residents can take full advantage of the concierge service.
Visiting relatives remarked how helpful staff members are. One says, "My dad is living in memory care at Brookdale Paramus. The staff is wonderful and very accommodating. They keep the people very entertained. Every day they're doing something like games, music, movies, trivia, and baking classes. I have not eaten anything there, but my dad really enjoys the food, and it looks very good."
Atria Park of Great Neck provides forward-thinking senior memory care services in a secure, structured environment. The specially trained caregivers assist residents with daily living activities, including oxygen administration, medication management and diabetes management. A licensed nurse is on duty 24/7 to assist community members with pressing health needs. Residents enjoy three chef-prepared meals per day, and Saturday and Sunday religious services are held weekly. On and off-site activities abound throughout each month, and physical therapy sessions are available on-site. The pet-friendly community provides resident transportation, and family members are welcome to dine with residents in their apartments or in the communal dining room.
Family members are pleased with the memory care services here. One says, "The wonderful staff at the Atria, Great Neck, NY took great care of ... my favorite aunt and uncle. They suffered from Alzheimer's Disease and the staff was attentive and helpful every step of the way."
Hudson Hills Senior Living provides memory care services within a secure, mentally stimulating environment. The community's specially-designed Reminiscence Neighborhood operates personalized programs that include multi-sensory experiences, regular contact with pets and children, daily exercise sessions and group activities. Staff members assist seniors with bathing, grooming, daily clothing selections, medication management, socialization and incontinence management. Seniors receive 24/7 monitoring, monthly health evaluations with registered nurses, weekly housekeeping services and 24/7 bistro-style meals and snacks. The Hudson Hills grounds include secured walking paths surrounded by manicured gardens. Each resident room is equipped with emergency response systems and personalized concierge services are available.
Family members praise this community. One says, "We chose Hudson Hills because they only had one available room with a shared room in memory care which made it more affordable. Everything was handed very quickly. … From my observations, the food seems fine. They do seem to be flexible and accommodating with the menu choices as well."
Sunrise at Fleetwood focuses on seniors as individuals and customizes memory care services to the unique needs of each resident. The community is an Authorized Validation Organization. Staff are trained in the Validation method of encouraging communication, reducing stress, and maximizing dignity and happiness for residents with dementia. Caregivers are available around the clock to assist residents with activities of daily living, including medication management, hygiene and mobility. The dining room provides table service and serves fresh chef-prepared meals in accordance with individual preferences and medical diets. A small bistro cafe serves snacks and beverages 24/7. Eight activities programs offer socialization and recreational opportunities designed for specific purposes, such as artistry, learning and reflection. Residents can also indulge in hobbies, including gardening and music, or spend time with friends in the sunroom or media room.
Relatives praise the family atmosphere and friendly staff. One says, "Staff are very friendly. The rooms are clean and cozy. They have a family-type atmosphere. The facility is well kept and clean. They are definitely suited towards patients who have early memory loss and that is the biggest reason why we chose it. They offer delicious food."
Sunrise at Mill Basin provides senior memory care services in a beautifully appointed facility that offers views of Jamaica Bay. Staff members help residents with all daily living activities and incorporate personalized memory care techniques into each resident's daily care plan. Memory care residents live within the community's secure Reminiscence Neighborhood, which is specially designed to promote easy navigation and social interaction. Residents enjoy three homemade meals per day and have access to snacks and beverages 24/7 from the on-site bistro. Pets are welcome to live with residents, and religious services are held here regularly.
Family members praise this community highly. One says, "My mother has been at Sunrise at Mill Basin for less than two months now. Its location is quite convenient. They have a dedicated memory loss center, which is what my mother needed. The facility itself is situated by the water, so it is very nice and seems like a comfortable place for her to be."
Sunrise at Sheepshead Bay is situated in the heart of Brooklyn and near many of Manhattan's local amenities. The community provides residents with an open-air atrium for social gatherings and water views of an inlet that serves as a common watering hole for swans. Wellness is a focus, with on-site physicians, podiatrists, dentists and therapists. Caregivers foster a calm and caring environment for memory care residents to allow them to focus on maintaining cognitive skills. Separate activities for memory care residents helps to underscore treatment methods.
Community reviews highlight the quality of care and well-appointed physical environment. Residents also point out the clean living spaces and kind staff members. One writes, "Sunrise at Sheepshead Bay was excellent and I liked the community a great deal. It was clean, the staff was friendly, and as soon as you walk through the door they address you and greet you.”
Sunrise of Cresskill is situated in a three-story mansion surrounded by wooded areas, providing natural scenery and walking trails for residents. Activities for residents range from arts and crafts classes to cooking demonstrations to a book club and more. Amenities include a 24-hour bistro and formal dining room for meals and dedicated care managers help residents with individual living plans. On-site services include housekeeping to promote a relaxing, chore-free lifestyle, and overnight guest allowances create a comfortable atmosphere when residents want to host family members for a visit. Memory care plans are personalized to residents and may include validation therapy.
Residents point out the array of activity options for residents, all of which promote engagement and social interaction. The longevity of the staff members is also an often-cited factor. One writes, "I have chosen Sunrise of Cresskill for my mother and it was excellent… The average tenure of the staff was the thing I liked most, they are very kind…”
Sunrise of Edgewater is a senior living facility that provides assisted living, independent living, skilled nursing and memory care. It sits on the banks near the Hudson River just 8 miles from New York City. Residents receive their choice of living space ranging from studio apartments to two-person suites, which include a personal bathroom, a kitchen and an emergency call system. Seniors can enjoy restaurant-style dining, an activity calendar, a television room and scheduled transport to the city to visit shops and restaurants. Sunrise of Edgewater focuses on memory care with its Reminiscence Memory Care Program, which features separate areas, memory-focused activities and life enrichment managers who are trained in Validation Therapy and other memory care techniques.
Families enjoy the peace of mind Sunrise of Edgewater brings to both them and their loved ones. One says, "Beautiful community! Wonderful staff! Strong leadership! The staff goes above and beyond for all of their residents' needs offering them and their families exceptional service."
Sunrise of Glen Cove offers upscale senior living with its lovely outdoor patio, sun porch, chef-prepared meals and spacious private accommodations. The community’s Reminiscence neighborhood is a safe, nurturing environment dedicated to seniors living with cognitive conditions. Secure, thoughtfully designed spaces allow easy navigation while encouraging resident interaction. Life enrichment managers, who are individually assigned to residents, use evidence-based dementia care methods, such as person-centered validation therapy. This enables the team to empathize with residents’ emotions and behaviors, engage in effective communication and provide dignified care. The Reminiscence program includes activities that promote multisensory experiences while incorporating residents’ individual preferences. Personal care services such as incontinence and medication management are also provided.
Visiting relatives are impressed with the staff who makes sure residents’ needs are accommodated. A family member observes that their loved one adjusted well to the community saying, "She loves her caregivers. She has made many new friends and loves to participate in the activities. She feels like she is living in a five-star hotel with fine dining,”
In a luxurious setting, The Bristal at Lake Success is dedicated to providing memory care services to those with Alzheimer's and memory-related disorders. To ensure resident safety, the Foresite Predictive Health and Fall Management system is used, and an emergency response system is installed in every apartment. The community provides all meals and refreshments for seniors, with meals being adaptable to particular dietary requirements and served in the communal dining room for socialization purposes. Individualized care plans are designed with resident's interests and needs in mind, with the Hands-On & Hearts-In program forming the basis of such plans. The community's amenities include a sports bar, outdoor patio, a computer room and a beauty salon. Residents can also undertake arts and crafts activities, writing and reading, exercise, and gardening. Housekeeping, laundry and maintenance are provided.
Residents love the amenities and staff. One family member says, "Dad is never wanting for activities. ... The food is appealing and alternatives are always available. At night, he is checked upon every two hours. There is always an RN on the premises. The RN's, LPN's and CNA's are caring, informative, and attentive. ... Dad's demeanor has improved a great deal ... always has a smile on his face!"
The Waterford on the Bay Senior Living provides waterfront views and luxurious living spaces. Amenities include a resident lounge on each floor, three gourmet meals each day and religious services for all denominations. Residents enjoy access to 24-hour concierge service and on-site speech, occupational and physical therapies. Memory care residents have a dedicated floor with enhanced security features and specific programming to help residents with cognitive and memory conditions. This includes sensory programs to reinforce quality of life and programs to reinforce life skills.
Reviews of this community not only emphasize the luxury living spaces and amenities but also the range of activities in which residents can partake. The waterfront location also provides opportunities for outdoor activity. One resident notes, "This is an amazing place. It's more like being at home than in a facility.”
Willow Towers is an assisted living community located in New Rochelle, NY, offering residents assisted living and memory care. Seniors can choose between a studio, one-bedroom or two-bedroom apartment and a personal care plan. This luxurious community offers many amenities to its residents including nutritious chef-prepared meals served three times a day, a 24/7 cafe, recreational rooms and massage. Seniors can also take scheduled transport to the city for day trips to shops and local eateries. Activity options include music, art, pet therapy and fitness and cooking activities. Medication administration and incontinence management are also included in the community's memory care program.
Residents love the clean and clear amenities along with the comforts of home at their fingertips. "I only have the best things to say about [Willow] Towers. My mother in law had wonderful care, and was kept stimulated both mentally and physically," said one family member.