The New Year is just around the corner and if you have a loved one diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, you may have been supporting him or her for some time. This could be your spouse, a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or even a sibling. Whoever it is, you want the best for them.
You understand that Alzheimer’s disease is progressive. The signs and symptoms of this disease are going to increase as the years pass. Even though this member of your family still seems relatively lucid and cogent most days, the signs are clear.
They are forgetting conversations they had with you and others. They are using the wrong words at times. They are forgetting appointments, what they were doing just a few minutes ago, and exhibiting some of the other telltale signs of Alzheimer’s.
How can you improve support for this individual?
During the new year, there are plenty of things you can do to help this aging senior better cope with this form of dementia. You don’t have to feel guilty if you suggest they lean on professional, experienced care more than they turn to you.
That’s because somebody who has experience supporting other seniors with Alzheimer’s is going to understand how the disease will progress, what can be done now that might make a difference in the future, and how to anticipate issues like Sundowner’s syndrome.
What is Sundowner’s syndrome?
This is a condition where a person with some form of dementia, like Alzheimer’s, can become agitated, hostile, and belligerent, most often during the evening hours.
This tends to happen because many tasks are saved for those final hours or even minutes of the day. Cleaning up after dinner, taking a shower, finishing laundry, cleaning up, getting dressed, and so on are often considered simple tasks that most people do each day, but for somebody with mental decline issues, it can feel overwhelming.
In this type of situation, it’s best to spread out the tasks throughout the day rather than keeping them all for the evening time.
So, what’s your New Year’s resolution?
If you truly want to help this individual better this year, learn as much as you can about home care options. An experienced home care aide, somebody who has worked with other seniors with Alzheimer’s, can be an incredible asset.
And the best part is they don’t have to be hired for full-time, not when you hire through an agency. This senior can depend on a reliable home care aide for just one or two days a week to start. What better way to help them become more comfortable depending on an experienced caregiver in the New Year?