Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s Disease
Being a caregiver to a loved one with Alzheimer’s Disease requires patience and awareness to maximize your results.
Dealing with a neurological diagnosis that has a progressive decline is frightening and sad. When you are caring for a loved one that clearly cannot “think” of what they wanted to say or do, is a challenge.
Retaining information is very hard. To make it easier on both of you, I would suggest that you consider doing the following:
1. Get a small erasable white board and put it in a place that is easy to access. Placing it on the front of the refrigerator or on a table next to the patient’s chair, usually works well.
2. Write out the date each day and add the appointments or plans for the day, to prevent the patient from asking you the same questions over and over.
Example: Let’s say that you are going to dinner at your friend’s home at 6 p.m.
To avoid the patient asking you what time dinner is, or where you are going again, the information is right there. Just direct them to the “answer board.”
Once the habit is developed, for the patient to go to the “answer board” to remind themselves what time the activities are, you will avoid getting so frustrated repeating yourself.
Develop as many predictable routines as possible. Keep clothing in the same locations.
If you are finding that dressing is becoming a challenge, because the patient cannot locate clothing consistently, place labels on the front of the drawers, to make to easier;
Small signs that say socks, undershirts, etc. are very helpful.
Start with these ideas and let me know what you are dealing with. We can work together to figure out a way to manage the challenges you are having.
My message right now is start where you are. Go into the Free Forms section of the web site and take advantage of some of the forms there. Develop a plan with goals to improve your loved one’s situation.
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