Learning that a loved one or family member has Alzheimer's can be heartbreaking. It is incredibly difficult to see someone you love slowly slip away and change. Many families choose to care for an Alzheimer's patient themselves as long as possible. If you're going to be a caregiver for an Alzheimer's patient and have him or her live in your home, use the following tips:
Create a Routine
Alzheimer's can be very frustrating to both the person afflicted with the disease and a caregiver. One way you can help over some the frustration is by keeping a strict routine, with regular wake up times, meal times, activities, and bed time. A good routine can help an Alzheimer's patient know what to expect throughout the day.
Don't Move Things In Your Home
When you have a loved one with Alzheimer's living with you, it is a good idea to not change things in your home. Alzheimer's patients often do better when everything is kept in the same place so they can become familiar and comfortable with the floor plan of your home and find things without great difficulty.
Caring for a person with Alzheimer's on a daily basis can be very trying and difficult. Don't be afraid to ask other family members to help out, so you can get a break. If you do not have any family nearby to assist with the care of your loved one, call his or her health insurance company to see if he or she has insurance coverage for home health care. A home health care agency can send out staff that can assist your loved one with personal hygiene, provide companionship, or help run errands, such as picking up prescriptions. If your loved one needs skilled nursing care, a home health agency has medical professionals who can help.
Recognize When Assisted Living May Be the Best Choice
It is natural to want to care for your loved one who has Alzheimer's yourself, but as the disease progresses an assisted living facility may be the best choice. Many assisted living facilities offer comprehensive services for Alzheimer's patients, with skilled professionals who are very experienced in caring for people with advanced Alzheimer's disease. If your loved one also has other health problems or conditions in addition to Alzheimer's, an assisted living facility may be the best place for him or her so he or she can receive regular nursing care and medical attention.