If a member of your family has recently received an Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis, you all need to prepare for the road ahead and decide on who will care for your loved one. Caring for a parent with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia can be extremely stressful and take its toll on your mental and physical health.
No matter what, you need to remember that you are not alone. It’s estimated that over 16 million people in the US care for someone with dementia, so if you are now part of this statistic, here are some tips that can help make sure you and your loved one receive the best care possible.
Plan for the Future
The more research you conduct into your loved one’s disease, the more prepared you will be for future challenges. Unfortunately, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia progress over the years and you will see your loved one’s health and mobility significantly decline. While you may be able to care for your loved one in the early stages, you may want to consider Dementia & Alzheimer’s Care Overland Park KS who provides assisted living, hospice care, and dementia care facilities. If you are looking for compassionate and personalized care for your loved one, visit this website to find out more.
Develop a Personal Support Plan
While your sole focus will be on caring for your loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia, you must take good care of yourself along the way too. If you aren’t paying attention to your own health and wellbeing, you won’t be in the right frame of mind to deliver sufficient care for your loved one. Getting a good night’s sleep, practicing relaxation techniques, watching what you eat, and managing stress is vital for your mental and physical health.
Prepare for Changes in Communication
As your loved one moves through the stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia, their communication skills will start to diminish. Although it can be hard to see your loved one have difficulty in conversation, there are things you can do to avoid your loved one becoming stressed and agitated, such as by keeping communication short and simple, using closed-ended questions, as well as finding new ways to say the same things.
Deal with Problem Behaviors
One of the biggest challenges you will face when caring for a family member with Alzheimer’s or dementia is their changes in mood, behavior, and personality. In many cases, your loved one can become aggressive, hallucinate, and have difficulty eating or sleeping. Above anything else, make sure you remain patient with your loved one and try and put yourself in their shoes. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to siblings and friends who can share the responsibilities with you, especially if you are in fear of your loved one lashing out and causing you harm.
While it is heartbreaking to see a loved one’s health deteriorate before your very eyes because of Alzheimer’s or dementia, you need to stay strong and be prepared for what’s to come. If you’re the designated caregiver, all the advice above can prepare you for the road ahead and ensure your loved one’s needs are put first.