Caring for someone with dementia is very different from general senior care. Your elderly loved one may have marked periods of confusion, memory loss, and behavioral changes. The symptoms of dementia also tend to increase with time. These five best practices can help you build a good foundation for helping your loved one handle dementia.
1. Get a General Understanding of How Dementia Works
Most people only have a basic understanding of what dementia actually is. Spend some time researching the subject, and talk to your loved one’s doctors. Dementia entails more than just memory loss. The changes that happen in your loved one’s brain may make him or her suddenly seem like a different person. Being able to remind yourself of the physical reasons behind things such as suddenly lashing out can help you be a better caregiver.
Caring for a senior with dementia can be challenging for family caregivers. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of homecare families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
2. Include Your Parent in Important Decisions
People with dementia should always have their wishes respected as much as possible. Your loved one may also be capable of being involved in his or her care more than you might realize. If your loved one is in the early stages of dementia, try to find out how he or she wants to manage his or her care as time goes by. Seniors in the later stages of dementia can also share their opinions. Whether they point at pictures of what they want to eat for lunch or get to smile if they like their new caregivers, offering choices helps them be empowered.
3. Put Yourself in Your Parent’s Shoes
Empathy is one of the most important traits you can have as a caregiver. Being able to consider how your loved one feels can help you get through those challenging moments. People with dementia often act out when they’re confused. Thinking about how your loved one feels can help you stay calm and find options to help your parent handle whatever’s bothering him or her.
4. Accept the Need for Support
You cannot expect to do it all. At some point, your loved one may need constant supervision. You may need someone to watch him or her as you run to your own doctor appointment, or he or she may also need overnight care. Accepting support from the very beginning makes it easier to accept help as your loved one’s needs increase. Asking for help early on also helps your loved one adjust to a new caregiver before beginning to experience more severe symptoms of the condition.
Being a caregiver for a loved one with dementia is a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities can sometimes feel overwhelming, but help is available. Families looking for top-rated Calgary elder care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.
5. Always Stay a Step Ahead with Planning
Dementia usually progresses slowly, which gives you time to plan for the next stage, but you should also avoid falling behind. Your loved one might seem fine one day, but he or she could wander away the next. Planning to give your loved one a little more care than you think he or she needs at each stage helps you stay on top of his or her changing needs.
Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Calgary 24-hour care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or is recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner when your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging. Call us today at 403-301-3777 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.