Alzheimer’s is a progressive neurological disease that begins with partial memory loss and ultimately turns out to be a strenuous brain disease. It is the most prevalent form of dementia, a general term referring to memory loss and the lowering of intellectual abilities. Most people associate Alzheimer’s to older people. Caring for Alzheimer’s patients may be overwhelming. However, caring for them in the best ways possible enables the caregiver to also cope through the days ahead.
You can look after an Alzheimer parent in the following ways:
1) Maintain Constant and Good communication
Communicating with an Alzheimer parent can be a challenging task. It is through daily practice that the caregiver can achieve a basis for understanding with the patient. However difficult it is to communicate, do not give up. You can enhance the contact through the following ways:
- Utilize a calm voice and select uncomplicated words and short sentences
- Find clues of what they are saying through their body language and emotions, as well as considering their surroundings
- Give them adequate time to respond, and do not interrupt
- In case they struggle to locate a word or express a thought, try to give options for the word (s) they are looking for calmly
- Avoid speaking to them like a baby or like they do not exist
- Be positive in the way you talk to them and give instructions
- Lower background noises such as those of radio and television. It will help the patient focus better and process what you are telling them
- Remain open to their concerns even though they prove to be difficult to handle
- Maintain focus while speaking to the patient, keep eye contact, and address them by their names always
2) Formulate a Daily Uniform Schedule
Study the daily routine of the parent and detect their behavioral patterns. Try to alter your routine to create time for the patient according to what fits them. If they cooperate more in the evenings, regulate your schedule to maximize on interacting with them during such moments. From there, it becomes easier for you to incorporate strategies that can help you handle the Alzheimer parent better.
3) Maximize on Meal Times
Some patients may not want to eat at all, while others may want to eat at all times. Since eating involves fine motor coordination plus the senses which may lessen due to the disease, make the meal times more fun for them. It will make them forget everything and concentrate on the food, hence take in the nutrition needed for them to live better. Use meal times for creating social connections with the patient and keep a constant meal routine.