Caring for an elderly loved one with dementia can be an extremely challenging process. Not only do you need to look after his or her physical wellbeing, but you’ll also have to manage a variety of mental and emotional complications. These tips can help you provide the best care without sacrificing your own happiness.
1. Become a Researcher
Learn as much as possible about this progressive disorder to keep your loved one healthy and happy. Even if you think you know quite a bit about dementia, this condition is surrounded by misconceptions. As a new caregiver, you also need to spend some time researching your loved one’s specific type of dementia.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Flower Mound Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
2. Keep a Journal
To properly care for a senior with dementia, you should carefully track all the symptoms. Whenever you meet with your loved one’s primary doctor or a dementia specialist, this type of information will be invaluable. Your caregiving journal should include information such as your loved one’s diet, sleep schedule, and any unusual symptoms you’ve recently noticed.
3. Create a Support Team
No matter how much time and energy you’re willing to devote to caregiving, everyone needs help at some point. Having a few friends and family members ready to assist you with errands or chores can take a bit of stress out of the situation. Whenever your loved one is prescribed medication or receives new treatment instructions from the doctor, your support team should be given this information.
Even when families have the best intentions, caring for a senior loved one with dementia can be challenging. Fortunately, Home Care Assistance is here to help. We are a leading provider of dementia care. Flower Mound families can take advantage of our flexible and customizable care plans, and our caregivers always stay up to date on the latest developments in senior care.
4. Speak Clearly at All Times
As the disorder progresses, your loved one will most likely begin to have difficulty with complex sentences and ideas. Not only is this situation frustrating for caregivers, but it can also make seniors with dementia hostile or violent. Practice giving clear instructions with short sentences and simple words. Being able to clearly communicate with your loved one could prevent a few challenges down the road.
5. Monitor Your Loved One’s Diet
It might seem easier to serve your loved one’s favorite foods, but this can cause serious health issues. Seniors who have been diagnosed with dementia-related disorders have very high rates of malnutrition, diabetes, and obesity. Sticking to a healthy diet isn’t going to cure dementia, but it could alleviate some of the symptoms. If you’re unsure of what your loved one should be eating, consult with his or her doctor or a registered dietitian.
6. Schedule Breaks for Yourself
Caregiver burnout is a serious condition characterized by ongoing stress, fatigue, anxiety, and depression. Dementia caregivers who don’t take regular breaks could compromise their physical and emotional health. Spending a few hours every week doing something you enjoy gives you a chance to reset and replenish your energy. You can also hire a professional caregiver to assist your loved one in your absence or when you need a period of respite to care for yourself.
Families who need help caring for a senior loved one can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior home care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more. Schedule a free in-home consultation by giving us a call today at (972) 468-6010.