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ABCs of Memory Care Terms

If you and your family are starting to look for care providers for a loved one with memory loss or other cognitive care needs, it can feel like diving into a foreign language! Just like any other new medical diagnosis, it helps to take some time to familiarize yourself with the terms that are commonly used in memory care programs.

Even if we just review the ABCs of memory care, you might find some words or acronyms that you don’t recognize. Some of these are medical terms, some are legal, and some have to do with your loved one’s care plan or how we provide memory care.


Advance Directive
These are instructions that an individual can include in their legal documents (like their will or living will) that specifies the kind of care they want to receive.

Activities of Daily Living. This term is used in our Comfort Care homes and in our care plans to describe how we help clients through daily tasks.

Against Medical Advice. You might hear this term in a discussion about a care plan, because every care plan takes into account the wishes and preferences of our clients.


This is an abbreviation of a Latin term that means “twice a day”. You’ll see this commonly with medication or on prescription pill bottles, or sometimes in medical instructions or as part of a care plan.

Bowel Movement. Comfort Care does provide personal hygiene care, including incontinence care, so you might see this noted in a care plan.

Blood Pressure. We work closely with our client’s medical care providers, so this term might be part of a client’s care plan as we all work together for our client’s best health outcomes.

Blood Sugar. Our caregivers can help monitor chronic illnesses, like diabetes, and so you might see this term in a care plan.


Complete Blood Count. A CBC is a test that can detect a wide range of diseases, and might be part of your loved one’s care plan.

Certified Dementia Practitioner. It takes lots of people providing lots of types of care to create our memory care program, and a certified dementia practitioner may be a part of your loved one’s care plan if they’ve been diagnosed with dementia.

Congestive Heart Failure. Heart disease is common among Americans, so Comfort Care staff are familiar with common symptoms and how to monitor for them.

Certified Medication Aide. A CMA is someone who has received additional training and certification to be allowed to dispense medication under the supervision of a doctor or RN.

Certified Nursing Assistant. A CNA is someone who has received additional training and certification to be allowed to work with patients under the supervision of a doctor or RN.

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. Our staff has training in emergency care, so CPR is a term that is used in our emergency care plans or training.

These are just some of the important terms you might hear as you develop a care plan for your aging loved one. You can work with your loved one’s physician or care specialist to learn more about their particular needs, and what their memory care plan should include.

If you’d like to learn more about the memory care offered by ComfortCare Homes, contact our helpful staff today for information on our specialized services.

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