After providing care to an aging loved one with Alzheimer’s for a while, you may begin to lose sight of some basic concepts that affect his or her health and happiness. Make sure to remind yourself of these essential truths about Alzheimer’s care from time to time so you can always be at your best.
1. Each Stage Requires Different Levels of Care
Certain stages of Alzheimer’s disease can last for years, which make it easy to get into a routine and keep doing the same things. However, forgetting to plan for the future could leave you scrambling to figure out how to best care for your loved one. Make sure to research the different stages of Alzheimer’s so you can establish plans for each new symptom that arises.
2. Physical Health Affects Thinking and Reasoning
Alzheimer’s disease is often viewed as a mental health condition since it affects a person’s moods and memory. However, your loved one’s physical health also plays a big role in how well his or her cognitive abilities function. For instance, being dehydrated can exacerbate Alzheimer’s symptoms such as memory loss. Make sure your loved one follows a healthy diet plan and has assistance with exercise that promotes blood flow to the brain.
Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Huntsville respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.
3. Memory Abilities Are Retainable
In addition to helping your loved one stay physically healthy, you can do activities that strengthen his or her memory. Keep in mind that brain training activities should be enjoyable and fun. For instance, you and your loved one could play a classic memory card game, or you can find activities to do on the computer if he or she enjoys technology. You can also help your loved one retain his or her memory by doing the same things regularly. For instance, you can encourage your loved one to perform a task such as getting dressed in the same order every time.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Huntsville Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
4. Regular Breaks Benefit Both You and Your Loved One
You and your loved one spend a lot of time together, which is great for bonding. However, you should step away occasionally to catch your breath, and your loved one needs to be used to having other people provide care. For instance, your loved one may be much more comfortable if he or she already knows the caregiver covering you if you get sick.
5. Accommodations Promote Greater Independence
Your loved one can accomplish many tasks when you make a few accommodations. For instance, your loved one may be able to brush his or her teeth independently if you leave only the necessary items on the bathroom counter and provide a short list of visual images depicting the procedure. Whenever it’s possible to do so safely, make sure your loved one at least attempts basic tasks independently.
6. Self-Care Helps You Stay Patient
Alzheimer’s care is exhausting work that is fraught with many ups and downs. While you may be able to stay positive most of the time, you must also remember that small stressors could add up to you losing your patience. Make sure to plan self-care activities throughout each day that allow you to relieve stress. Deep breathing, journaling, and talking to a friend are all potential ways to eliminate stress that builds up over time.
Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Huntsville senior home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. Call (256) 716-9940 today to learn about our in-home Alzheimer’s care plans.