Caring for a loved one with dementia can be rewarding in many ways. It can also be stressful, challenging, and even overwhelming at times, especially as the condition progresses. According to the Pew Research Center, there are roughly 40 million unpaid caregivers in the United States alone. If you’re one of them and you’re caring for a senior loved one with a dementia-related condition, here’s what you can do to get the help you need.
Seek Input from Your Loved One’s Doctor
Your loved one’s regular physician can be a reliable and valuable source of help and information. In addition to giving you a better idea of what you can expect as your loved one’s dementia progresses, the physician may be able to help you out by:
• Recommending additional treatments you haven’t yet considered
• Offering caregiving advice, such as planning activities when your loved one is less confused during certain times of the day, that could make daily tasks less stressful
• Suggesting other resources you may wish to consider
The doctor may suggest in-home care as a resource to consider. Families looking for top-rated Montgomery senior home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.
Turn to Other Family Members
Accepting help from other family members with more mundane tasks like cleaning and running errands can allow you to spend more quality time with your loved one. They may also be able to take over altogether during times when you need to refresh and recharge personally.
Get Your Loved One’s Friends and Neighbors Involved
If it’s not easy to get help from other family members, see if your loved one’s nearby friends or neighbors can help. Even regular assistance with things like yard care and shopping can be helpful. They may also be able to provide added companionship for your loved one when you’re not available.
Explore Your Options with Caregiver Learning Opportunities
Family caregivers aren’t automatically given a “how to” manual for caring for someone with dementia. For this reason, it can be helpful to take advantage of books, online training tools, or even local workshops specifically for caregivers to brush up on skills that may allow you to:
• Prepare healthy meals your loved one will actually want to eat
• Effectively handle dementia-related issues such as agitation and mood swings
• Communicate better with your loved one as the condition advances
Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of elder care. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
Join a Support Group
It’s perfectly normal to need an outlet for sharing your own personal experiences with caring for a loved one with dementia. One way to get this kind of help is to join a local or online-based support group, which can help you better understand common caregiver issues like isolation and feelings of hopelessness with people who know what you’re going through.
Use Medicare’s Online Tool
As your loved one’s dementia advances, you may need to consider professional care options. Medicare’s online tool allows you to find care agencies in your area that are Medicare-certified.
Consider Home Care
Professional caregivers know how to properly and safely care for individuals with dementia. Taking advantage of this type of care, even if it’s only during certain hours of the day, can give you time to tend to your own needs. Your loved one will benefit because he or she will be able to remain in the comfort of home.
There are a variety of reasons to consider professional dementia care. Montgomery, AL, dementia caregivers are available 24/7 to help seniors maintain better cognitive health, and they can also assist with various tasks like medication reminders, transportation to medical appointments, and nutritious meal preparation. Call (334) 593-3988 today to find out how Home Care Assistance can help your loved one manage the challenges of dementia and maintain a high quality of life.