Providing care for an aging loved one can be challenging, especially if he or she has been diagnosed with dementia. There will be good days and bad days, but certain “tools” can make the caregiving role less difficult. Here are some important tools dementia caregivers may need.
An Understanding of Balance and Boundaries
Finding balance can help you prevent burnout and stave off negative emotions. Taking out time for self-care is easier when you have some assistance with your caregiving duties. Ask family members and friends to help out, or consider hiring a professional caregiver who specializes in dementia care. Caregivers can also help with activities you’re not comfortable doing. It’s okay to say no to a certain task, and you need to put your physical, mental, and emotional needs first without feeling guilty.
Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is respite care. Caledon families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation.
The Ability to Break Down Activities
Frustration, forgetfulness, and sundowning are some of the common issues among seniors with dementia. Family caregivers need to break down activities to make them more manageable for their loved ones. If your loved one forgets a step when completing an activity, remind him or her that everything is fine. Make sure to break down the activity into a series of steps and let your loved one conquer each step independently.
There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional elderly care. Caledon families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.
A Positive Attitude
Seniors with dementia often feel confused, which can cause them to act out in a negative way. Instead of becoming irritated and making the situation worse, remain positive. Reassure your loved one that everything will be okay. Effectiveness, reassurance, and positivity come in handy when caring for an elderly parent with dementia. Seniors with dementia often say things that have never happened. When this happens, remain positive and respond with comfort, love, and support.
The Art of Distracting and Redirecting
Behavioral challenges are normal, especially as dementia progresses. However, knowing how to distract and redirect could calm the atmosphere and prevent your loved one from becoming irate and violent. One way to distract and redirect is to change the environment or the subject. If your loved one is upset about a show on television, turn the device off and suggest going outside for a short walk through the neighborhood. Be subtle when you distract and redirect, and make sure to ease the situation. You could say something like, “I see that show is not enjoyable. Would you like to go have lunch?”
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 Caledon 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. To create a comprehensive in-home care plan for your parent, call us at 905-951-8885 today.