If you have a loved one who requires Alzheimer’s care, then you may be taking on the responsibility to provide that for them. If they are in the early stages of this disease, they may have a lot of questions and anxiety about the road ahead. You may be confused and trying to figure out as much as you can as well.
The truth is that there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease. That means that it’s important to understand the baseline Alzheimer’s disease signs and symptoms so that you can be aware of some things that you may experience as time goes on.
It’s also important to develop a routine for (or with) your loved one. This means that they will essentially do the same thing every morning and evening. For example, they may wake up at nine o’clock in the morning and immediately go to the bathroom, brush their teeth, wash their face, and then get dressed. Then they might go to the kitchen to get something to eat. In the evening, they may grab a snack then go and brush their teeth, get into their night clothes, and then into bed. While this routine may seem simple or commonplace, it’s going to help provide them with comfort and grounding as the disease progresses.
It’s also vital that you develop strong communication skills with your elderly loved one. You want to get as familiar as possible with what is known as their ‘baseline’ behaviors. These are the things that they do regularly. It could be that they get frustrated doing a puzzle. Maybe they make underhanded comments when frustrated. Maybe they withdraw.
As long as you are aware of these baseline behaviors, you’ll be able to avoid them or dismiss them when they occur.
You should also develop a strong level of patience. There are going to be plenty of times when you are faced with challenges that can test your patience. The elderly individual may say things that don’t make sense or could be hurtful. You need to avoid taking these things personally.
Also, when you’re speaking, keep your tone easy and normal, even if you’re upset. The elderly individual may be more susceptible to tonal changes in your voice.
Be willing to set the example, even if you don’t feel like being nice and calm. Alzheimer’s care is not about you, but the patient, and it will be challenging at times. When you strengthen your communication skills, you’ll help the patient live a more comfortable life, filled with things they want to do.
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