Caring for a Parent With Dementia at Home: A Short Guide
Dementia can be challenging to understand, making it challenging to provide effective care. Watching loved ones, particularly family members, suffer from the condition can be heartbreaking, even more so because it can be hard to know how to help. If you’re caring for a parent with dementia at home, this article will provide valuable tips and best practices.
Of course, dementia is a complex condition, so covering everything in this article won’t be possible. For more information, discussing the situation with your parent’s doctor is a wise choice. However, be sure to check in with your parent when they are coherent to understand better how they’re feeling. Additionally, the experts at Always Responsive Home Care are available to discuss and recommend home care services in Monroe.
What Is Dementia?
Dementia is a condition that affects the mental flexibility and memory of patients. This condition will primarily affect short-term memory and learning ability in the early stages, but symptoms worsen as the disease progresses. Patients can struggle to recall even longer-term memories in later stages of the disease, resulting in difficulty recognizing friends and family members.
Safety is the most critical factor to consider when caring for a parent with dementia at home. Some appliances that pose no threat to most people can be highly hazardous to people with dementia. Ensuring the house is easy to navigate and that no fire risks are present are effective ways of ensuring the area is safe for your parent.
Stairs can also present a risk, especially when combined with balance problems in seniors, so explore alternate mobility options if the patient is in a multi-story home. If there is no way to avoid the patient using the stairs, it’s crucial to ensure that all railings are secure and that no boards have become loose. While dementia patients may resist the safety measures discussed in this section, it’s essential to be firm, as safety is always a top priority.
Set a Routine
Dealing with dementia can be frustrating for patients, particularly when it interferes with daily tasks. It can be challenging for dementia patients to cope with the increased difficulty of managing self-care and everyday chores.
Creating a regular daily routine to follow can alleviate a lot of stress. Make a list of tasks for the patient to complete each day, including simple things like brushing teeth and eating breakfast. This structure can help patients feel more in control of their lives, improving their mental health.
While structure can be beneficial, it’s crucial to maintain variety in patients’ lives. Be sure to offer choices to the patient when you can, even if it’s as simple as what to eat or watch that day. Dealing with dementia is frustrating for patients and caretakers, so occasionally mixing things up can help keep spirits up.
Be a Source of Support
Dealing with dementia takes a toll on everyone involved, and sometimes it’s beneficial to slow down and listen. While we understand that there are a lot of factors to balance in this situation, being a source of emotional support for your aging parents can help in several ways. We know how much effort you put in already, but sometimes a simple conversation can make a significant impact.
Firstly, supporting your parent can help create a sense of cooperation and teamwork, rather than opposition. It can be challenging to convince your aging parent to accept assistance, and listening to their fears and concerns can help to ease them. Dealing with dementia can be very lonely, and a gentle touch or gesture can considerably lift your parent’s spirits.
If you’re struggling to handle care planning for a person with dementia, professional assistance can make a massive difference. While we know you care for your parents and want to be there for them, managing care for a condition as debilitating as dementia while balancing your job and family life can be overwhelming. Professional caretakers can ease the burden on adult children and improve the patient’s quality of life.
For children of dementia patients in New Jersey, Always Responsive Home Care provides a range of services that can be an excellent alternative to assisted living homes. Always Responsive Home Care offers in-home care services, including full-time and overnight caretaking, serving Middlesex, Mercer, Monmouth, Somerset, Ocean, and Union Counties.
Always Responsive Home Care is proud to employ a team of passionate and experienced caretakers who are experts in dealing with dementia patients. When you choose Always Responsive, you can be confident that your parent will receive individualized treatment and memory care. If you need help caring for a parent with dementia at home, call Always Responsive Home Care today at 609-208-1111 to discuss your needs with a friendly representative.