28 Oct 2015

How to Provide Care for People with Alzheimer’s

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It can be difficult to observe the effects of Alzheimer’s disease on our loved ones, and provide them the care they need as they deal with the disease.

Taking Care Of Alzheimer’s Patient

Here is a brief overview of how to provide care when looking after someone with this particular health issue.

Communicating with someone who has Alzheimer’s disease

Communicating can be difficult for people suffering with Alzheimer’s as they may struggle with paying attention, lose their train of thought, have trouble finding the right words to express what they want to say, and have difficulty understanding people.

There are strategies that caregivers can employ to communicate with Alzheimer’s patients more effectively. For example;

  • Maintain eye contact and use the person’s name to help to gain and hold their attention
  • Use gentle touching as an effective way to provide guidance
  • Touch your loved one’s had to soothe and comfort them and help you hold their attention
  • Try to remain patient if your loved one becomes frustrated or has an outburst; remember that this is an effect of the illness and not the person himself acting
  • Speak clearly and slowly and provide step by step instructions
  • Remain conscious of your body language, as Alzheimer’s sufferers may remain conscious of non-verbal cues indicating your displeasure with them; maintain a warm an open stance by avoiding folding your arms tightly
  • Let your loved one remain involved in decision making; it is best to present them with alternatives rather than ask open ended questions. For example, you should ask, “Would you like to play a board game or watch television?” rather than “What would you like to do?”

Managing changes in Alzheimer’s sufferer’s personality

Alzheimer’s is a degenerative brain condition that will cause profound changes in the way your loved one acts and thinks. Alzheimer’s sufferers may easily become confused and anxious due to these changes, so it is important that you minimize their stressors.

Here are some tips:

  • Establish a daily routine so your loved one knows what to expect
  • Don’t argue or try to reason with the person if they are not receptive
  • As people with Alzheimer’s may tend to wander, keep doors locked or install a chime system, and make sure your loved one has a piece of ID on them at all times
  • Limit the amount of noise and ruckus surrounding your loved one.

This condition is often just as difficult on the family members of the patient as it is for the patient themselves. For more information on coping tips for daily life, contact our team today.

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