How to Handle a Patient Suffering From Alzheimer’s

How to Handle a Patient Suffering From Alzheimer’s

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How to Handle a Patient Suffering From Alzheimer’s

Ask anyone who has cared for an Alzheimer’s patient about the experience and you will be inundated with complaints and frustration. It is quite emotionally and mentally taxing to care for a forgetful person seven days a week, 365 days a year. However, care providers who implement the tips detailed below by our Philadelphia home care specialists will find helping a family member or friend saddled by Alzheimer’s proves that much easier.

Be Realistic About Potential Progress

Caring for a Bucks County Alzheimer’s patient who is extremely forgetful will test your patience. If this individual fails to quickly progress or merely makes slow incremental progressions, do not become frustrated. Be honest with yourself about realistic progress. Each stage of dementia provides its own unique challenges. Align your expectations accordingly and providing care won’t be nearly as frustrating. 

Consider keeping a personal care journal that details the patient’s progression or regression, review those notes, and tailor care accordingly. Above all, be patient as it might takes weeks or even months to make meaningful progress.

Focus on Communication

Alzheimer’s patients are likely to misinterpret your words and even your written directions. If this patient cannot make sense of your attempt to communicate, don’t give up! Speak slowly and clearly with words a child can understand. If necessary, repeat yourself. Try to minimize distractions including noise so the patient can solely focus on your words.

How to Handle a Patient Suffering From Alzheimer’s

Provide Structure

The daily structure is essential for Alzheimer’s patients. Develop a routine and your loved one will get into the habit of doing the same things day-in, day-out, promoting consistency and familiarity. Ideally, your loved one will awake at the same time each day, eat meals on a schedule and go to bed around the same time every single night without exception. 

It will help to use cues to distinguish between morning, afternoon, and evening. As an example, opening the curtains each morning lets the sun in, ultimately helping the patient become that much better orientated.  Watching the local Philadelphia nightly news can serve as a transition point to nighttime sleep. 

Reflect on the Past To Encourage Memory Recall

Reminiscing about experiences and people from the past will make you and your loved one that much happier. Even if the Alzheimer’s patient in your life does not immediately recall the memory you reference, he or she might recall the person/event if you continue to describe it. Pull out photographs, play videos from those experiences on your smartphone, and encourage the patient to share what he or she remembers about the event referenced when initially reflecting. Such a thought exercise will help the Alzheimer’s patient remember family connections/experiences, possibly to the point that he or she starts remembering additional events, building momentum toward meaningful mental progression.

Contact Aurora Home Care

Are you or a loved one in Philadelphia struggling with daily living? If so, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Let our team assess your situation, provide custom-tailored assistance, and significantly improve your well-being. Reach out to our Philadelphia home care service providers today. You can reach our team by phone at 215-354-4444. If you prefer to reach us online, send us a message at info@auroraathome.com or complete our online contact form.

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