During those cold late autumn nights, you might be lying awake, unable to fall back to sleep. You keep thinking about your mother or father. Perhaps it’s someone else. They’ve been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and without a second thought you volunteered to help. It might even be your spouse. Whoever it is, you will likely have a number of concerns as the days turn into weeks that then progress into months and years.
Early on you will have worries.
Most people have no prior experience helping somebody diagnosed with any type of dementia. There may have been another family member in the past, such as a grandparent or even an aunt or uncle who dealt with this serious disease, but most of the time these men and women will have seen those things from a distance, not up close.
Because the senior diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is still able to manage his or her own care for the most part early on, most of the family caregivers out there don’t truly understand or appreciate what may happen. Those worries and fears can cause a lot of sleepless nights.
Then, you move into the middle stages of the disease.
This can cause even more concern, more fears, and more frustration. The frustration can be caused by feeling as though you’re doing nothing more than banging your head against the proverbial wall. You give them reminders, you make sure they don’t wander off, and you do everything you can to make sure they remain safe and comfortable.
Yet, you’re met with resistance at every turn.
This person gets frustrated with you. They get angry and scared because of the memory loss. They are fully aware of what’s going on with them, but there are moments when they could be in the middle of doing something and suddenly have no recollection of where they were going, what they needed to do, or even where they are.
When you are caring for somebody with Alzheimer’s and the frustration is building, it’s okay. Being frustrated is fine; it’s a natural emotion. What you do next, though, can determine not just the quality of care this person relying on you receives, but also your state of mind and overall health.
When you feel frustrated, understand that help is just a phone call away. Home care aides who have experience working with elderly clients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s can be an invaluable resource not just for seniors dealing with this disease, but their family support system as well.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring Alzheimer’s care in Lancaster, PA, contact the caring staff at Extended Family Care of Lancaster. Call today at (717) 205-2174.
A long-time resident of Lancaster County, Mary Lynne enjoys spending time with her husband Terry, and their 3 horses and collies. The countless hours of caring for her client and employee-based “family” at work and at home can truly depict the selfless character of Mary Lynne Heller.
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