Caring for A Parent with Alzheimer’s Disease or Dementia
When an elderly parent or loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, or any other form of dementia, an immediate rush of emotions can sweep over. These emotions can include anxiety, fear, sadness, or even denial. Caring for a parent or loved one with Alzheimer’s is certainly difficult and requires a lot of patience and tolerance. But it is important to remember that you are not alone in facing this disease. Plenty of resources and experts are available to help you through every step of the process.
At Alvita Care, we offer support home care services to those who might need home care or geriatric care management for their loved ones. Alvita Care is not only here to help your elderly loved one but also to help you and your family cope with the process of accepting and handling dementia.
Here are some suggestions that we have found to be helpful advice for caring for Alvita Care patients suffering from dementia:
At Alvita Care, we cannot stress how important it is to put a loved one who has Alzheimer’s or any other form of dementia on a routine. Not only is a routine imperative today, but as your loved one’s Alzheimer’s progress, routine is going to be essential for keeping them as healthy as possible. The routine for a dementia patient needs to be simple, orderly, and followed every single day. For example, your loved one should have a set routine for waking up, brushing their teeth, combing their hair, and sitting down for morning coffee. At first glance, it will appear trivial and silly to keep up such a strict routine, but, in fact, this will help reduce anxiety and confusion for your loved one.
If your loved one has dementia, try to avoid asking them to make decisions. Although it might seem counterintuitive, asking your elderly parent or loved one with dementia to make decisions on their own will only further confuse and frustrate them. In fact, you are doing no service to your loved ones by asking them to take control and make decisions. It is better to accept that they simply do not have the capacity to make these decisions. While it is okay to try and make your loved one feel as if they are involved in decision-making, it is important to remember that at the end of the day, everyday decisions must lie in the hands of their spouse, family, or friends that care for them.
Keeping your loved one busy and active is vital to the long-term care management of dementia. Daily exercise is important, but keeping your loved ones engaged in activities is also vital to keeping them strong. Many senior centers and community centers have programs designed for people with all forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s. At Alvita Care, we’ve had great experiences with our clients who attend these programs, and we strongly encourage participation. Music therapy and art therapy have a remarkable impact on a loved one’s life who is suffering from any form of dementia, including Alzheimer’s. Even if your loved one never expressed a specific interest in music or art, they may begin to enjoy them at a later age and might find them helpful in keeping their mind stronger and their mood brighter.