A daily routine is important for all people, but it is particularly important for seniors who receive home care services. A daily routine means performing daily activities such as eating and sleeping at the same time every day. Here are a few of the reasons why a daily routine is so important for seniors receiving home care — especially for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
When a senior accepts outside help, it can be difficult in the beginning to get used to having a new person in their life, especially now that the person providing care is taking on responsibilities that the senior used to do in the past. Having a routine set in place with the professional caregiver can help with the transition, allowing the senior to know what to expect and how to feel more comfortable while entering a new stage in their life. Moreover, if their routine is as similar as possible as it was when they were not receiving homecare services, this will make the transition much more normal and less like their life is being uprooted.
It is common for those who receive home care to be experiencing cognitive decline, such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. These people typically feel out of control of their lives or disoriented, causing them to feel stress or anxious. A routine, however, can provide structure in their lives, allowing them to know what will be happening and when. Over time, these actions become routine and the body begins to sense what is coming next.
Seniors, especially those with dementia and other cognitive impairments, have lower quality sleep. However, scientific studies now show that a daily routine results in better quality sleep, both by promoting a deeper sleep as well as a lengthier one. Quality sleep can improve mood and allow people to deal with events in their day in a much more positive manner than if they were sleep deprived.
Stress and anxiety can also occur as seniors wonder if their needs will be met. This is true during the initial transition of receiving home care services, before they realize that they will be well taken care of. Once a routine is established, they begin to feel much more comfortable.
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