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 Joliet's senior population continues to grow (22.32% growth between 2014 and 2019), so does the concern about aging and the risk of cognitive impairment.
In Joliet, the number of deaths for those 65 and older caused or partly caused by Alzheimer’s disease increased by 38.01% between 2014 and 2019. To put that into perspective, the number of deaths from all causes for that same age group only increased by 12.73%, showing that Alzheimer's is a growing concern in the region. Overall, the percentage of seniors’ deaths related to Alzheimer’s is slightly lower than the rest of the nation (4.71% in Joliet 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 Joliet. 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 Joliet, 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:
Rock Run Place Assisted Living and Memory Care Community is in a tranquil setting with scenic outdoor views. Here, residents can live in a pet-friendly environment where the staff makes nursing supervision available around the clock. Additionally, the community's caregivers offer assistance for individuals with moderate to severe dementia. They can help with daily activities such as bathing and dressing, and they look after individuals who are prone to wandering and seeking exits. Seniors' health situations receive continual observation, and for further support, the staff coordinates physical, speech and occupational therapy as well as physicians' appointments. The community's personnel are prepared to respond to emergencies. Its individual and communal spaces have designs meant to promote pleasant sensory stimulation. Social activities occur regularly, including during shared meals, and the dining program ensures that residents receive customized nutritional support.
One resident's family member praises the caregivers here, writing, "I have found the staff to be caring, professional, compassionate and competent." This reviewer also calls the rooms large and pleasant, and they have kind words for the community's activities program and flexible care plans as well.
Brookdale Orland Park offers all the comforts of home within a relaxing community featuring spacious common areas, maintenance-free accommodations and beautifully landscaped outdoor areas. In the dedicated memory care unit, seniors living with Alzheimer's and other cognitive conditions can enjoy a full life under the care of consistently assigned caregivers. Residents thrive in the secure, nurturing environment designed with easy-to-navigate spaces, cheerful colors and soothing elements. Brookdale's Clare Bridge program helps seniors experience a sense of belonging and purpose through well-planned structured activities. Resident programming incorporates individual interests and life history, and a daily schedule may include cognitive workouts, B-Fit physical exercises, creative projects, stimulating games and social events. Innovative technology-based programs, such as touch-screen devices, light therapy and robotic pets, help enhance engagement.
The clear and efficient communication system earns high ratings for the community. "My wife is in the memory unit," shares a resident's husband. "The best part about the community so far is being comfortable with the staff. … I also feel free to ask questions and I know I will get an answer. They are just super, they care about the families as much as they do the residents."
Conveniently located in a small town outside Chicago, Willow Falls Senior Living offers an idyllic living environment close to nature reserves, shops and medical services. A certified Center of Excellence of the memory care methodology I'm Still Here, this community improves seniors' quality of life by alleviating the common symptoms of dementia: anxiety, agitation, aggression and apathy. Residents live in a secure neighborhood and participate in skill-building activities, such as arts and crafts, brain games and music therapy. The staff members, who complete a six-month training program, thoroughly evaluate each resident's preferences and abilities before developing an individualized care plan tailored to their needs. The 24/7 caregivers, overseen by a registered nurse, provide cueing, reminders, medication management and incontinence care. They also help with activities of daily living, including bathing, grooming and dressing. The culinary team serves snacks and three nutritious meals every day.
Family members praise the devoted staff and clean environment. A resident's grandson writes, "My grandfather's experience at Willow Falls was exceptional. The staff was always attuned to his needs. Their work is truly unparalleled. The facility was always impeccably clean. I was very impressed with Willow Falls and would recommend it to anyone."
Clarendale of Mokena offers a variety of lifestyle options under one roof in its village-like community, including memory care for seniors facing the daily challenges of cognitive impairment. The smoke-free memory care neighborhood features convenient amenities for comfortable living, including cozy private suites, multiple common living rooms and an outdoor patio. Residents can also enjoy pampering services in the beauty salon and barbershop or do light physical exercises in the fitness center. Clarendale's Heartfelt Connections memory care program focuses on maintaining a sense of purpose and quality of life for residents through life-enriching activities. The team uses LifeBio reminiscence tools to chronicle residents' unique life stories and into personal booklets, which serve as the foundation for a more informed, resident-centered care plan. Additionally, caregivers use these personal booklets to bring up joyful memories from the past.
Family members find relief in knowing loved ones are happy and well taken care of. A resident's daughter writes, "I am so grateful for the consistency and help of Clarendale and the staff, and the confidence we have that parents will be set for their future. It's a gorgeous community, in a great location but most importantly, has wonderful people."
Sunrise of Palos Park is located in a quiet residential neighborhood, conveniently close to local hospitals and parks. The therapeutic environment in the community's Reminiscence memory care neighborhood helps promote independence and dignity for seniors dealing with everyday cognitive challenges. The layout is spacious and unobstructed for safe, easy mobility, and carefully chosen furniture, lighting, colors and music offer soothing and stimulating effects. Individually assigned caregivers provide evidence-based dementia care, using validation techniques to help them manage confusion, social isolation, communication problems and other difficult behaviors associated with memory loss. Licensed on-staff nurses conduct monthly wellness visits, and Sunrise's CareConnect system electronically keeps track of residents' health records. Additionally, an engagement app helps family members monitor loved ones' activities and receive updates about community events and programs.
Visiting family members like that the staff ensures loved ones' comfort and helps them feel at home. "I have never felt that my father was not cared for," writes a resident's daughter. "The staff go above and beyond to make all of us feel comfortable and at home. The caring staff helped us when my father transitioned into their Reminiscence neighborhood, which provided him the security he needed."
Located in a tranquil rural setting, The Cottages of New Lenox welcomes seniors to its intimate cottage community featuring a lovely courtyard, gazebo, walking paths and inviting living spaces. The studio apartments are comfortable and spacious, and residents can add their own personal touches for a more homelike, familiar atmosphere. The community's memory care uses Charter Senior Living's I'm Still Here program, an innovative, tested approach that promotes quality of life at all stages of cognitive conditions. Daily activities are person-centered, with the staff ensuring that residents engage in meaningful activities based on unique choices and skills. Licensed nurses provide round-the-clock on-site supervision, and emergency call systems in the apartments ensure prompt solutions for any urgent issues. Residents can look forward to delightful dining experiences, with chef-prepared meals served in a warm, inviting setting.
Families like that the activities cater to all stages of cognitive conditions. "My mom is at The Cottages of New Lenox," says a resident's son. "They take good care of her there. It's clean and I'm well informed of everything that's going on. The staff is courteous, kind, and friendly. … My mom has advanced Alzheimer's, but they still have activities every day."
Located near local hospitals and less than an hour from Chicago, HarborChase of Plainfield provides world-class memory care for seniors living with various stages of cognitive conditions. The Cove neighborhood is secure and comfortable, and round-the-clock caregivers ensure that residents always experience their best days through stimulating daily activities. Individual Silhouette of My Life profiles allow the team to develop personalized programs that cater to residents' interests and skills. Calendars usually include brain games, cooking and art classes, guided fitness exercises, social events and spiritual services. All these are designed to promote mental, physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. The dining program focuses on mind and body nourishment, with residents having access to brain-healthy menus served restaurant-style. Additional services include therapy, support groups and psychology, podiatry and auditory services.
Family members feel at ease knowing that loved ones thrive and feel comfortable in the community. A daughter shares, "I was very pleased with the care given to my mother. She made many, many friends. Every day of the week the day was filled with many activities to keep the residents busy and able to interact and make friends which is an extremely important part of life."
Bickford of Tinley Park provides personalized memory care tailored to residents' core needs. Individualized service plans ensure seniors receive the support and assistance they need 24 hours a day, including help with bathing, dressing, grooming, mobility, medication management and toileting. Pull cords and pendants ensure team members are easy to reach. Caregivers receive advanced dementia care training to support residents at every stage of memory loss, and they participate in one-in-one activities with seniors to maximize engagement. Moments of Happiness includes specialized small-group activities tailored to residents' cognitive level, and dementia support groups help seniors connect and share their experiences. Lifesong Stations include unique items that reflect residents' personal interests and hobbies, helping them stay stimulated through meaningful leisure activities. Life enrichment programming includes further opportunities to engage seniors' creative, intellectual, spiritual, physical and social interests.
Visitors like the welcoming common areas and kind team. "Everything was just the best," says one reviewer. "They have a beauty salon, a recreation room, a dining room, a living room and computers. Everything was real beautiful. The staff always contacts me, talks to me, and lets me know what is going on."
Atria at River Trail is a modern and welcoming senior living community. The Life Guidance memory care neighborhood uses a forward-thinking approach that ensures residents continue to live meaningful lives. Seniors have access to secure indoor and outdoor spaces where they can socialize with family and friends. Each resident has a memory display box outside their apartment to help them independently navigate home and to spark conversations with staff members and visitors. At least two physical activities are offered every day, and social and recreational events are held regularly to keep seniors engaged. Activities include musical entertainment, art therapy, yoga, walking, educational lectures and pet therapy. All staff members receive specialized dementia training and are required to undertake at least 15 hours of additional training each year.
Family members are impressed by the excellent care provided by the staff members. One reviewer says, "I have a loved one in the community and am so pleased with the care she has received since moving in. Staff always ensure she is comfortable and always exceeds our expectations."
The Courtyard memory care program at Peace Village celebrates the individuality of all of its residents living with dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Focusing on each resident's abilities, the community's caregivers assist seniors with all activities of daily living and engage them in specialized programming, such as fitness classes, brain games and music therapy, to help them lead purposeful, happy lives. The nursing staff is on hand 24/7 to help seniors with memory decline-related stressors. Dentist, physician, ophthalmologist and podiatrist appointments are available on-site, and educational, religious and wellness events are held on the grounds regularly.
Family members like the aging-in-place convenience, exceptional staff and beautiful grounds here. One reviewer says, "My mother lived in independent living, assisted living, and memory care during her six years there. The staff is professional, caring and kind. They treat each resident like family. The facilities and grounds are immaculate and beautifully decorated for each season."
Situated in a serene suburb near Chicago, Revere Court of Bolingbrook is a dedicated memory care community. Personalized memory care plans promote psychological health and social engagement. Brain-stimulating activities include singing and music, gardening, scrapbooking, exercises and games. Social, spiritual, lifestyle and leisure amenities include pet visits and live entertainment. Residents can participate in outings, community service and intergenerational activities to establish connections with the wider community. Tasty meals and snacks, featuring nutritious superfoods that boost mental and physical well-being, are served by dining staff who are trained to accommodate the needs of seniors with dementia. Special diets are accommodated. Rooms include large closets, walk-in bathrooms, utilities (except phone and cable), housekeeping and laundry.
Residents and family members cherish the intimate, vibrant atmosphere and caring staff. One husband writes, "Everything is likeable. It is a one-story building that takes no more than 50 people. It has activities for the people all day long. It is such a beautiful place. The staff is very courteous and helpful, and my wife loves it."
Cedarhurst of Frankfurt offers a blend of first-rate amenities, a welcoming environment and person-directed care for seniors facing the challenges of memory loss. The safe, secure environment features cozy common areas and relaxing outdoor spaces, designed with wide pathways and unobstructed views for easy navigation. Private rooms are dementia-friendly, featuring handicapped-accessible bathrooms, emergency call systems and individual climate controls. Certified dementia care practitioners and visiting physicians and nurses ensure residents receive compassionate, professional care, and an electronic health records system provides family members with timely updates regarding loved ones' care and wellness status. Individual assessments help determine the appropriate level of care, with supportive care for those with early-stage conditions, assistive care for moderate conditions and comprehensive care for seniors with advanced memory loss.
Families like the layout, noting that residents have easy to access to everything. "My mom has just moved into Cedarhurst of Frankfort," says a resident's daughter. "They come in and check on her. She pushes the button, and they're right here. Where my mom's room is at, it's located by everything like by the beautician department, by the movie theater, by where she has to go eat at."
Alden Courts of Shorewood's specially designed memory care neighborhood features colors that encourage memory stimulation, task boards that provide personal prompts and aromatherapy techniques that promote a calming, soothing environment. All the community's dementia and Alzheimer's disease-trained caregivers use evidence-based methods and specialized interventions to help them better execute constructive communication and symptom management support services. The staff members get to know each resident personally and develop customized sensory stimulation activities that enhance each senior's abilities. The communal dining room serves Mediterranean menu options for optimal resident brain health. Throughout meals, caregivers use cues to increase the seniors' appetites and offer bite-sized finger foods to encourage independent eating.
Family members rave about the attentive, excellent memory care services here, saying, "They provided such great care for my mother. As she would say 'they treated me like a queen'. The atmosphere was wonderful and it truly takes some very special people to do what they do daily."
Located on a scenic 18-acre campus, Victorian Village Continuing Care Community provides a full spectrum of senior living options. For those living with Alzheimer's and related dementias, the Gilead program uses a personalized approach that takes every resident's needs, interests, abilities and personality into consideration. Staff is extensively trained in Teepa Snow's Positive Approach to Care, receiving ongoing training in the latest dementia care techniques. Available 24 hours, they help with bathing, grooming and medication management and provide verbal cueing and redirection to help reduce confusion and wandering behaviors. The staff-to-resident ratio is high to ensure sufficient supervision. Daily programs are tailored to residents' interests and designed to engage them with their surroundings, with options including exercise, life skills programming, reminiscing, music, art, and pet and music therapy. Chef-prepared meals are served daily, with numerous options available for special diets.
Loved ones compliment the compassionate team. "The nursing and care staff is … excellent, as are the physicians and nurse practitioners who visit," says one reviewer. "There is also a good physical therapy facility there if one is needed. From the Administrative staff to the receptionists I don't think you will find a more compassionate group."
Arbor Terrace Naperville is a welcoming and homelike senior living community. The Bridges Neighborhood caters to seniors in the early stages of memory loss. This section enables residents to continue to participate in activities in the assisted living area while receiving additional help and therapy intervention as required. The Evergreen Neighborhood focuses on residents who are in the mid-to-late stages of cognitive decline. Each resident has a care plan tailored to their unique abilities and interests. A team of trained caregiving staff is on hand at all times to assist seniors with the tasks of daily living and guide them through the activities of the day. The Dining with Dignity program serves nutritionally balanced meals served in a way that enables residents to continue to dine independently.
Reviewers praise the wonderful care given to their loved ones, with one saying of her mother's experience, "Her care EXCEEDS all expectations!! She is so well cared for, always clean, well-fed, and kept very busy! Her caretakers treat her like their own mother. They are knowledgeable and creative, extremely hardworking, and so personable."
Bickford of Oswego offers specialized memory care to address the needs of seniors living with Alzheimer's and related dementias. Caregivers receive advanced dementia care training, and they're on-site 24 hours to supervise and support seniors with bathing, dressing, grooming, mobility, medication management and toileting and to coordinate care with outside physicians, pharmacies and therapists. Innovative dementia programming includes Lifesong Stations, which contain items that match residents' interests for use during meaningful leisure activities. Through companion and small-group activities, residents experience a high level of engagement and interaction. A lively life enrichment program includes daily opportunities to engage physically, mentally, intellectually and socially, including trips to local restaurants, shops and parks. Fun-filled theme days feature coordinated meals, costumes and decorations, and numerous special events welcome family involvement. Restaurant-style dining offers three daily meals made from scratch with high-quality ingredients.
Visiting relatives appreciate the diverse activities. One says, "There are many activities, including daily morning exercises (most are done sitting down), games with prizes, movie nights, weekly shopping trips to Walmart, Walgreens, etc., outings in the Bickford bus to see Christmas lights, or to the local zoo, or local restaurants … and [they] have even been in local parades."
The Reserve at Oswego is a senior living community that provides care to seniors with memory loss disorders. The community follows the Montessori-inspired SPARK program. This program focuses on the interests of each individual and uses those to design activities that will spark memories or provide a sense of purpose for that senior. A team of dementia care-certified staff is on hand at all times to offer support or redirect any difficult behaviors. Social events are held on a regular basis to keep seniors engaged with family members and other residents. Therapy services are available, including pet therapy, art therapy and aromatherapy, to create a calm environment and reduce confusion. Activities include gardening, yoga, dancing, cooking, supervised DIY tasks and group outings.
Family members praise the compassionate staff and diverse activities offered. One reviewer says, "The level of compassion and dedication demonstrated by staff towards my father-in-law and all the other residents makes it obvious our family made the right decision. He enjoys the many activities and socialization opportunities The Reserve provides as well."
For seniors living with Alzheimer's and related dementias, Bickford of Aurora offers a high level of specialized, around-the-clock care. Specially trained caregivers are available around-the-clock, using individualized care plans to assist seniors with bathing, grooming, mobility, medication management, toileting and coordinating appointments with off-site physicians, therapists and pharmacies. Dementia programming includes one-on-one activities to maximize engagement, specialized small group activities tailored for memory care residents and Lifesong Stations, which engage seniors in meaningful activities through items that reflect their unique interests and hobbies. A full schedule of activities includes creative, social, intellectual and physical opportunities to keep seniors stimulated, plus outings to restaurants, shops and parks, family gatherings and theme days complete with meals, costumes and decorations. Restaurant-style meals include nutritious entrees and a la carte selections made from high-quality ingredients, with choices available for special diets.
Visitors compliment the meals and activities. "We had lunch together, and it was unbelievable, restaurant-quality food," says one reviewer. "I would give them 5 stars right off the bat. They do puzzles and many different types of crafts, play board games and do a lot of activities, like charades and other tabletop games."
Cedarhurst of Yorkville provides specialized memory care for residents living with Alzheimer's and related dementias, with three distinct care levels to meet their unique needs. Using a person-centered approach, the around-the-clock team tailors every plan for the individual. With supportive care, seniors receive in-person reminders about daily tasks with no hands-on assistance. Assisted care includes more attention and supervision, with observation from staff and one-on-one assistance when requested. Comprehensive care includes around-the-clock supervision and support with the activities of daily living. Staff members are trained by a Certified Dementia Practitioner, and a physician and nurse practitioner visit the secure memory care neighborhood every week. The engaging life enrichment calendar includes intergenerational programs, personalized memory boxes, music and pet therapy, exercise sessions, social events, religious services, shopping, community events and bus trips. Physical, occupational and speech therapy are all available on-site.
Visiting relatives appreciate the lively programming. "The activities are nice," says one reviewer. "They have flower decorating and arranging. … They also play bingo, have sing-alongs, they have exercise classes, an exercise room, and a room on the second floor that's like a movie theater. Every night they can watch a movie and there's popcorn."
Bright Oaks of Aurora's Courtyard memory care program seeks to help residents with dementia and Alzheimer's disease live happier, more engaged lives through its personalized, resident-focused services. Each day, residents engage in cognitive-enhancing activities such as music, pet and art therapy that stimulate their brain and include them in one-on-one and community interactions. Exercise classes, crafts and live music entertainment are regularly on the activities schedule. The community's memory care neighborhoods are designed especially to reduce resident confusion, agitation and discontent. On-site physician and physical, occupational and speech therapy visits are also available. Meals and snacks are offered 24/7 to allow memory care residents to eat on their own preferred schedules.
Family members like the progressive atmosphere of the community and the excellent nursing staff. One says, "They have made a lot of improvements. The nursing staff is top-notch. My dad was in memory care. I always felt like they kept a good eye on my dad."