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Dementia and Alzheimer’s Resources for Caregivers

Young caregiver spending time with a loved one living with dementia.

Serving as a caregiver for your loved one living with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease can be a very difficult, emotional job. Whether you actively provide daily caregiving to your loved one or simply care about a person living Alzheimer’s disease, there are resources available to help ease the situation for everyone involved.

In accordance with the Alzheimer’s Association, here are different tips and resources to help those caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease.

Early-Stage Caregiving Tips

In the early stages of Alzheimer’s, there’s a good chance your loved one will still function independently. They may still be able to drive and take part in normal social activities. Your main role during this time is to simply provide your loved one with support and companionship.

Here are some tips on how to provide appropriate support to your loved one who is in the early stages of dementia:

  • Think of Safety by making sure there are no immediate safety risks for your loved one.
  • Avoid Stress by prioritizing and organizing tasks for your loved one to help them avoid unnecessary stress.
  • Talk it Over by directly asking your loved one how you can support and care for them.

Middle-Stage Caregiving Tips

The middle stages of Alzheimer’s disease tend to be the longest and can last for many years. It’s during these middle stages that the dementia will progress and your loved one will start to require a greater level of care. As a caregiver, you will most likely notice changes in behavior, communication changes and that your loved one now needs help with daily care.

Here are some tips for how to handle this middle stage:

  • Use a calm voice when responding to repeated questions
  • Respond to the emotion of your loved one, instead of the specific question
  • Try to use simple written reminders if your loved one can still read
  • Do your best to learn what to expect in the middle stage so you can be prepared
  • Check with your loved one’s doctor if you notice any drastic changes

Late-Stage Caregiving Tips

The late stage of Alzheimer’s disease can last anywhere from several weeks to several years. As the disease continues to progress in this late stage, it’s likely that your loved one will require intensive, 24-hour care. In this stage, the needs of your loved one will change and deepen.

As a caregiver, try your best to focus on preserving the quality of life and dignity of your loved one. At this point in the disease, research has shown that your loved one is primarily experiencing the world through their senses. Here are some creative ways you can engage these senses and keep your loved one in good spirits:

  • Reading portions of books that your loved one enjoys
  • Playing your loved one’s favorite music
  • Looking at old photos together
  • Sitting outside together on a nice day

During this final stage, it will be important to focus on your loved one’s end-of-life wishes and care. You should try to plan your loved one’s end-of-life care with them when they are still lucid and able to make decisions.

Attend an Upcoming Webinar at Peabody Retirement Community

At Peabody Retirement Community, we understand that caring for a loved one who is living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia can be a difficult job. That’s why we provide resources to help caregivers learn more and prepare to care for their loved one.

Peabody is partnering with Life Care Service (LCS) on several upcoming webinars that are designed to provide education on dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Upcoming Webinars:

Ten Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s, on September 29th or 30th, at 2 pm EDT.

This webinar will discuss the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease and the differences between normal aging. Hear from people who have the disease and find out how to recognize the signs in yourself and others. You can register for the event here.

Healthy Living for your Brain and Body: Tips from the Latest Research, October 6th or 7th, at 2 pm EDT.

This webinar gives you the opportunity to learn about research in the areas of diet and nutrition, exercise, cognitive activity and social engagement while using hands-on tools to help incorporate these recommendations into a plan for healthy aging. Register for this webinar, here.

Dementia Conversations, October 14th or 15th, at 2 pm EDT.

This webinar provides tips on how to have honest and caring conversations with family members about the challenging and uncomfortable topics of going to the doctor, deciding when to stop driving and making legal and financial plans. Register for this webinar, here.

Virtual Dementia Support Group, Third Thursday of Every Month, at 7 pm EDT.

Family and friends of individuals experiencing dementia or Alzheimer’s are invited to join us each month for supportive conversation and the opportunity to talk with others facing similar experiences. Visit our events page for the Zoom Meeting information

Please contact us today for more information on our upcoming webinars and to learn more about our memory care community. We look forward to talking with you about your loved one soon!

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