Providing care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease can be both challenging and rewarding. As the disease progresses, the needs of the individual evolve, requiring caregivers to adapt their methods of care. At TreVista, we’ve helped countless families navigate the intricacies of Alzheimer’s care in Concord, CA. Based on our experience, here’s a guide on how to approach care in the most compassionate and effective manner.
1. Educate Yourself as a Caregiver
Understanding Alzheimer’s and its progression is the first step to offering the best care possible. It is vital to understand how the disease can progress, what signs and symptoms are, and how you can intervene and help.
Three Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease:
Stage 1: Considered the ‘mild’ stage, those recently diagnosed may be able to function well in professional or personal settings, but begin to show signs of forgetfulness and confusion. They might also start to lack critical thinking skills that they once exhibited.
Stage 2: As the disease progresses, it moves into the ‘moderate’ stage. In this stage, a person typically experiences more frequent issues with memory loss and confusion. Physical symptoms are common as well. Those with moderate dementia tend to struggle to recognize their loved ones, follow instructions, or carry out day to day tasks.
Stage 3: This stage is considered ‘severe’, meaning that the individual with Alzheimer’s disease will likely face difficulties in many areas, including talking, eating, walking, swallowing, and more. They also might not be able to remember where they are, what year it is, or who loved ones are.
However, it is important to note that each stage will vary from person to person. Dementia is not one size fits all, nor should be the care your loved one receives. If you are looking for a memory care community to help your loved one, knowledge about Alzheimer’s and dementia care in Concord, CA, will empower you to make informed decisions.
2. Establish (and Keep!) a Routine
>Routine can offer comfort and predictability to residents with Alzheimer’s. Whether it’s meal times, physical activities, or rest, maintaining a consistent schedule helps minimize confusion and anxiety.
For example, try to begin and end the day around the same time. Doing so will help promote better sleep. Also, keep meal times consistent as well. If your loved one takes any medications or supplements, try to give those to them at a set time every day. Even making these little adjustments will go a long way in bolstering their overall quality of life.
3. Engage in Stimulating Activities
While a routine is essential, it doesn’t mean activities have to be monotonous. Consider your loved one’s current hobbies and interests. There are ways you can incorporate these things into their daily life. For example, if your senior is a major fan of baseball, consider taking them to a local game. If that might be too difficult for them, find a baseball game on TV or play movies based on the sport.
At TreVista, we believe in providing diverse and stimulating activities for our community. This can range from arts and crafts, live music performances, scenic drives, exercise groups, and so much more!. Engaging activities are not only fun but can also delay cognitive decline. We believe that promoting life enhancing activities allows our residents to be the happiest, healthiest version of themselves.
4. Prioritize a Healthy Diet
Nutrition plays a significant role in overall health, even more so for those with Alzheimer’s. By prioritizing a balanced diet, rich in essential nutrients and antioxidants, you can bolster the physical and mental well-being of your loved ones.
When moving to a senior living community, especially one that specializes in memory care, take a look at the caliber of the dining services available. Here at TreVista, we proudly serve nutritious, home-cooked meals with menu options every day. This means that by becoming a resident, your senior can not only enjoy a delicious meal, but one that is nutritionally beneficial as well!
5. Work on Communication Skills
Unfortunately, as the disease progresses, your loved one might have a more increasingly difficult time being able to communicate both orally and nonverbally. Alzheimer’s can hamper communication, but that doesn’t mean understanding and connecting becomes impossible.
A few quick tips for improving communication include:
- Maintain eye contact with your loved one while talking with them.
- Avoid using vague language, such as too many pronouns. Example, if you are talking about your sister Jane, keep using her name and relationship to you throughout the conversation as opposed to commonly using ‘she’ and ‘her’. This will help your loved one keep better track of what’s being said.
- Even if your loved one uses colloquialisms when they speak, it is best to exclude them from your own speech. Flowery language can lead to confusion, especially for those with later stage dementia.
- Minimize outside noise. If you are visiting your loved one and they become overwhelmed by too much exterior chatter, it is best to talk in a more calming area.
While these are just a few suggestions, every person is different. It will take time, patience, and understanding to determine what works best for your loved one.
6. Seek Professional Services
There comes a time when professional assistance becomes invaluable. As a caregiver, know that it’s okay to reach a point where you may need additional help, such as the services provided by a reputable memory care community. TreVista offers specialized Alzheimer’s care in Concord, CA, catering to individual needs while ensuring the residents feel right at home. Our team’s expertise in Alzheimer’s and dementia care in Concord, CA, ensures that our community receives the best support available.
Contact TreVista Today
Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s requires patience, understanding, and above all, love. By equipping yourself with the right tools and information and seeking the expertise available in communities like TreVista, you ensure that your loved ones with Alzheimer’s lead a life filled with respect, dignity, and joy. Remember, the journey of Alzheimer’s care in Concord, CA, or elsewhere, is not one you need to walk alone.
To learn more about our community and the various services and amenities available, contact us today! We would love to give you a tour, answer any questions you may have, and above all else, be a resource for both you and your senior loved one.