Dealing With Patients: 5 Important Tips for Managing Alzheimer Behaviors
Nothing can be more heartbreaking than to see a loved one start to deteriorate before your eyes. What’s worse is seeing them begin to forget who you are to them.
But unfortunately, Alzheimer’s and dementia happens and it is just as taxing on the caregiver as it is the person it is happening to. They can go through a range of adverse behaviors that you may not be ready for.
If you find yourself in the early stages of this unfortunate situation, here five important tips to effectively deal with your loved one or patient who is showing Alzheimer behaviors.
Not For The Faint Of Heart
Dealing with Alzheimer’s is a difficult task by itself, and even more, if you have little experience. If you are a loved one and cannot effectively handle the situation by yourself, you should seriously consider a home care service.
It allows the patient to stay in familiar surroundings while still giving them the help they need.
Dealing With Alzheimer Behaviors
It certainly can be difficult to handle Alzheimer’s. But if you do believe you are up to the task, then follow these five basic points:
1) Prepare Yourself And Your Space
By this point, you already know that your loved one or patient has Alzheimer’s. But this is only the first step to preparation. It is important to verse yourself in any and everything dealing with Alzheimer’s disease so that you can adapt as their condition changes or deteriorates further.
This is also a good time to begin changing the place of or removing materials or objects they can get their hands on that can harm both them and you.
2) Create A Routine
This is important to their overall health; as their condition makes them forget, having a schedule keeps a sense of familiarity. Enact this with subtle actions, like musical indicators to show what is happening and let them know what to expect even if they don’t understand.
3) De-escalate Anger & Aggression
Anger and aggression are some of the side effects of Alzheimer’s. But they manifest because of frustration from surroundings or inability to communicate.
You can circumvent this by creating a calming environment. Try your best to alleviate external stressors and consistently carrying a calming demeanor to make them feel safe with you.
4) Keep Them Interacting
Keeping your loved one/patient socially active can help mitigate the forgetfulness, and if they have long-term friends, help them remember their past a little bit more.
Also getting them a pet could help to increase their sociability through nonverbal communication. Pets also help with emotional support.
5) Don’t Forget About You
Most importantly, this journey is not just for them, it is for you as well. It can often feel difficult to go through this process. But you are not alone.
Seek out help when it is needed, and even attend support groups. Over 5 million Americans struggle with Alzheimer’s, and that doesn’t include families.
It may be a 24-hour job, but you must carve out time for yourself to make sure you don’t physically, mentally, or emotionally deteriorate as well.
It’s Not Easy, But You Can Do It
Alzheimer’s Disease is an unfortunate thing to deal with, for the patient and the caregiver(s). However, it does not have to be the end of their life. You and your loved one can still live fulfilling lives.
Remember to be proactive and vigilant, and you can give your loved one the best help they need.