How to Deal with Alzheimer’s; Tips and Strategies for the Caregiver.

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PACING:

Sometimes the AD patient starts pacing or gets fidigety.  A few little tricks to calm them may be to walk with them, hold their hand, assure them they are in a safe place and are loved, offer a snack.  Something as simple as offering a bowl of icecream or cookies (usually their favorite snack works best), this will make them litterally stop and think (almost as if the wheels are moving in a different direction now)

BEHAVIOR:

Late afternoon or early evening behavior is usually called night timers or sun downers. A few suggestions to help make a smoother process may be tell them where they are and they are safe. Assure you will not leave them (and make sure you don’t!) Close curtains or blinds to the outside, the more activity, the more confusing, this way they HAVE to focus on what is in front of them. Maybe even turn on more lights in the home. When less lights are on, things look different and can be very scarey!

REFUSING CARE:

With a smile and lots of patience in your heart,keep a daily routine.  Don’t ask if they want to bathe, shave or whatever the activity, tell them it is time for the activity.  Always explain what you are doing.  Even if this seems trivial to you because you perform the same tasks every day, keep in mind, they have trouble remembering and the unknown can be very scarey and cause a lot of unnessary negative behaviors.  If they just absolutely refuse care, first off, make sure it isn’t due to them not understanding.  If they insist on fighting you, take a deep breathe, step away and try again later.

COMMUNICATION:

Communication is definitely the key to their behavior. Always reassure them they are in a safe place with people who love them. Give simple demands or instruction of tasks for them to do, yet don’t make it sound as if you are talking to a small child. Listen very closely to what they are trying to say, even if it turns out to be just garble, don’t make them feel inferior. Give them time to complete a thought and if that thought appears to be lost and you see them searching to try to get it back, ask the question again.

HEALTH TIPS:

Staying healthy is usually somewhere close to the top of most peoples list.  Alaways have a backup plan in cxase something unexpected happens.  Take one day at a time.  Maintain you sence of humor  (or find one, your’s gonna need it)  Remeber, it takes a strong willed person to be a fulltime vare giver of the AD patient.  Get enough rest, eat right, join support groups or friends or whoever, you will need others outside the home you can vent with.  It is also important you get a daily routine of a good vitamin and mineral regimen.  If you are under a gereat deal of stresas dealing with the AD patient, your immune system gets worn down causing you to be sussectible to colds, sniffles, anything going around.  Remember it is vitally important for you not to get sick, the AD patient’s is depending on you, they need stability and repetition in their lives.

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