Taking on the caregiver role for an aging loved one with dementia can be a rewarding experience, but there are also many challenges. Developing an effective care plan and management strategies can simplify the role. Below are some dementia care tips for family caregivers.
1. Speak Clearly
Being asked more than one question at a time can confuse seniors with dementia and cause them to become upset and even violent. When speaking with your aging loved one, use short, clear sentences, and avoid talking loudly. During the earlier stages of the disorder, the brain is typically able to connect information when it’s relayed clearly.
Dementia can be challenging for seniors to manage, but they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional dementia care. Anchorage seniors can benefit greatly from the Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program designed to promote cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia. CTM is included at no additional charge with any of the in-home care plans provided by Home Care Assistance.
2. Remain Patient
Dementia often makes it difficult for seniors to speak, remember people, and learn new things. These symptoms can make it challenging to handle daily activities independently, so seniors often rely on family caregivers, who can become overwhelmed at times. Regardless of how difficult things become, you need to remain patient and give your best. Your patience can calm the atmosphere and prevent arguments and other adverse reactions.
3. Schedule Activities Accordingly
Determine when your loved one is at his or her best and plan activities for those times. Scheduling activities accordingly can reduce the risk of physical and verbal outbursts from seniors with dementia, especially when they’re in public areas. Your loved one is more likely to participate in social events and work on hobbies when he or she is at his or her best.
4. Be Respectful
Repetition and combative behavior are typical in older adults with dementia. In these instances, you need to remain respectful. Remember the disorder causes cognitive decline and increases the odds of negative behavior, such as agitation and anger. Seniors aren’t always in control of their actions, particularly in the later stages, but they still deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.
Caring for a loved one with dementia is a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities can sometimes feel overwhelming, but help is available. 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 Anchorage homecare services 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.
5. Keep Seniors Active
Living with dementia doesn’t prevent your loved one from doing physical activities. Customize workouts based on your loved one’s physical and mental abilities. Maintaining an exercise routine can alleviate stress and slow brain aging in older adults with dementia. The movements increase the release of positive endorphins and stimulate blood circulation to the brain.
6. Offer Reassurance
As dementia progresses, seniors may become more fearful about the future. Having difficulty remembering familiar people, places, and actions can be frustrating and cause their anxiety levels to increase significantly. Offering words of encouragement or a reassuring touch could calm your loved one and give him or her the strength to keep going.
7. Take Time Off
It’s okay to take a break from your caregiving duties and focus on your self-care needs. To provide high-quality care, you need to be in suitable physical, mental, and emotional shape. Therefore, you need to schedule time off, even if you feel great.
Having a professional caregiver nearby can give you peace of mind about your loved one’s safety and comfort. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same in-home care. Families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner when your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging. Call us today at (907) 770-0907 to learn about our high-quality in-home dementia care services.