Everyday care for Alzheimer's
A trip to the hospital can be stressful for people with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia and their caregivers. Being prepared for emergency and planned hospital visits can relieve some of that stress. This article suggests ways to help you prepare and tips for making your visit to the emergency room or hospital easier.
In addition to the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, a person with Alzheimer's may have other medical problems over time, as all older adults do. These problems can cause more confusion and behavior changes. The person may not be able to tell you what is wrong. As a caregiver, you need to watch for signs of illness and tell the doctor about what you see. Here are some common medical problems to watch for.
Sometimes you can no longer care for a person with Alzheimer’s disease at home. The person may need around-the-clock care. Or, he or she may be incontinent, aggressive, or wander a lot. You may not be able to meet all of his or her needs at home anymore. When that happens, you may want to look for a long-term care facility for the person.
Some caregivers need help when the person is in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. Other caregivers look for help when the person is in the later stages of Alzheimer's. It's okay to seek help whenever you need it.
Doing things we enjoy gives us pleasure and adds meaning to our lives. People with Alzheimer's disease need to be active and do things they enjoy. However, don't expect too much. It's not easy for them to plan their days and do different tasks.
At some point, people with Alzheimer’s disease will need help bathing, combing their hair, brushing their teeth, and getting dressed. Because these are private activities, people may not want help. They may feel embarrassed about being naked in front of caregivers. They also may feel angry about not being able to care for themselves. These suggestions may help with everyday care.
People with Alzheimer's disease may take medicines to treat the disease itself, mood or behavior changes, and other medical conditions. Caregivers can ensure that medicines are taken safely and correctly. Here are some tips to help you manage medications for someone with Alzheimer's disease.
Being active and getting exercise helps people with Alzheimer’s disease feel better. Exercise helps keep their muscles, joints, and heart in good shape. It also helps people stay at a healthy weight and have regular toilet and sleep habits. You can exercise together to make it more fun.