Not only does Alzheimer’s disease affect the more than 26 million people who suffer from the actual disease, it also has a far-reaching effect on loved ones, such as children or a spouse. Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s is difficult not only because they simply might not remember you, but also because they can do dangerous things, wander away or lash out aggressively at caregivers.
Typically the disease progresses in stages, and the early stages can be difficult because while you might encourage your parent or spouse to visit a doctor and see if Alzheimer’s is the cause of their issues, the person is obviously quite fearful of hearing the diagnosis and might resist seeing a medical professional. Once the diagnosis has been made, many patients become understandably angry and fearful and might lash out at loved ones.
It isn’t easy, but keep in mind that their anger is absolutely not about you, but about fear and confusion. Imagine how you would feel if you lost your memory and were constantly confused and bewildered. Anxiety can be lessened to an extent by reducing the stimulus and stress surrounding the person with the disease. Make life as simple as possible with no responsibilities, and just meals and activities. Skip events where there will be too many people and too much noise, and while visiting with people is very important, limit the visits to just one or two people. Clean up the house and bedroom so that taking care of basic needs is as simple as possible.
When people lose their memory, they ask a lot of questions or become confused about the year or the people in their life that are still alive. Rather than argue with them and insist that “Cousin Sally passed away years ago,” simply ask them about the person in question. What are they like? What do you like to do together? It doesn’t help to argue. When they ask where they are and what they are doing there, simply respond in a calm way that they are very safe and loved and then change the subject to provide them something cheerful to focus on, such as telling them that you have a cookie and milk for them or that you are going to read to them.
In many cases, dementia has progressed to a point where providing care is extremely difficult and stressful. In addition, many people simply cannot accommodate a parent safely in their home. At this point, you probably need to find a good eldercare facility for your parent or spouse. Many facilities specialize in helping people with memory issues and are trained to deal with all aspects of Alzheimer’s. Finding a facility can be tricky, so consider talking to the staff at CarePlacement.com to find out about your options.
The staff at CarePlacement.com can help you find a suitable assisted living facility, a nursing home, a board & care facility or perhaps an in-home caregiver. They will look for facilities that have staff trained specifically to help residents with memory problems, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Skilled nursing facilities, also called nursing homes, are the most affordable option as some of the cost may be covered by Medi-Cal. Assisted living homes or a board & care home might be an option for those with a larger budget.
Agatha Lebouef loves reading home health care blogs. For more details about assisted living facilities in Solana Beach or for expert help finding board and care Laguna Niguel homes for your loved ones, please visit the Care Placement website now.