Caring for Someone with Dementia? Here’s What You Need to Know.
At times, the best lessons in life come through going through them firsthand; yet the wisdom we are able to glean from those who have walked an identical path before us is priceless. If you’re caring for someone with dementia and feeling a bit stressed in this uncharted territory, the guidelines below will help:
- A brief break will make all the difference. As soon as your senior loved one is struggling with challenging feelings, such as fear or anger, it’s advisable to pause whatever activity or task they are involved with, and allow the chance for a breather. Modify the environment by going into a different room or outside if weather allows, play some favorite music, browse through a photo album, or point out different birds and flowers. When peace is restored, you can attempt the task again, oftentimes with measurably better outcomes.
- Stop rationalizing. Aiming to prove a point or win a quarrel is seldom effective when communicating with a person with Alzheimer’s. Remind yourself that the individual’s brain functioning is altered, and as long as no harm will likely be done, permit the senior loved one to maintain their own personal reality.
- Overcome denial. While it may be human nature to want to deny that there’s an issue, recognizing the signs of dementia and seeking medical help right away is very important to obtain the care and treatment needed.
- Check medications. The side effects of certain medications have the ability to cause more confusion and cognitive difficulties than the disease itself. Come up with a detailed listing of all medications (including over-the-counter ones) and evaluate with the senior’s doctor to ensure that the advantages exceed any negative effects.
- Take proper care of YOU, too. Caregiver burnout and depression are significant risks for loved ones caring for someone with dementia. Make sure you’re making some time for self-care, socialization, and hobbies that you enjoy. Bear in mind that your family member will benefit from having a caregiver who is healthy and refreshed.
- Keep in mind that life can be fulfilling with dementia. While the person you love is going through some difficult changes, it’s valuable to appreciate that life, while different, can still be meaningful and bring joy regardless of the disease. Investigate various kinds of experiences for the senior to enhance socialization, improve memory and cognitive functioning, and remain physically active.
Hired Hands Homecare, the leader in dementia care in Pleasanton, CA and nearby areas, is always here to supply the support you need to ensure your loved one with dementia is able to live life to the fullest. Contact us online or at (866) 940-4343 to learn more about our highly skilled in-home dementia care for seniors.