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5 Things You Can Do For Your Loved One That Has Dementia or Alzheimer's

Updated on April 2, 2015

A Labor Of Love

Having someone you love suffering with dementia can be very daunting overwhelming, and scary. Even though you may feel that there is nothing that you can do to help, you can make sure they can live the rest of their life comfortably. For thirteen years I have worked in a nursing home with residents in their finale stages of dementia. These tips are basic and can be easily forgotten when caring for your loved one. I hope that these tips will help you in your day to day care

Please don't feel alone in this journey there are many outreach centers, and support groups that will offer you help. I have listed some links to the Alzheimer's web sites, and take a look at the related pages at the side of this article. Written by other writers here on Squidoo.

Photo by Rgstock

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5 Things You Can Do For Your Loved One That Has Dementia or Alzheimer's

For a better understanding as to what it's like to be an elderly person, Smear some soap on your sunglasses, wear earmuffs, a weighted camera jacket, and thick gloves. This stimulates what it's like to have cataracts, hearing loss, a heart condition, and arthritis. Imagine what its like to have Alzheimer's on top of this. Its important to alleviate these conditions, and to make their life as comfortable as we can. These tips will help

1. Glasses

Glasses
Glasses | Source
  1. Glasses: Eyes naturally deteriorate with age. Depending on the level of the dementia you should get there eyes checked. If they are in their last stages of dementia they should have their progressive lenses changed to a single nearsighted lens (for seeing far way). At this point they won't be reading, and the will be confused by the different strengths in the the lenses. Always keep the glasses clean.

2. Hearing

Hearing
Hearing | Source

2. Hearing: Have their hearing checked Some elderly people will take to the hearing aide some will not

3. Teeth

Hearing
Hearing | Source

3. Teeth: A visit to the dentist is in order to check for cavities and their gums. You and the dentist will have to discuss if they can undergo any procedure. They may have to be put under anesthesia. If they have dentures make sure that they are fitted correctly. As the dementia progresses don't be surprised if your loved one refuses to give you their dentures for you to clean, or refuse you placing them into their mouth.

4. Bowels

Bowels
Bowels | Source

4. Bowels: This can be easily missed. At this age many elderly people are on medication that can constipate. Keep written track. This can definitely be a mood changer. If they haven't gone in 2 to 3 days a laxative will have to be given

5. Your Mood

Your Mood
Your Mood | Source

5. Your mood: I know it's frustrating to have a loved one that has dementia. It isn't called the long goodbye for nothing. Your mood reflects on them. Accept who they are on that day. For example if they are looking for their mother don't say she is long gone, and pushing up daisies. Step into their world, and say mother has gone shopping. There is no need to upset a confused and diseased mind. Instead talk about her mother ask about her mother.

What stage of dementia is your loved one at?

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Medical ID

It's important to have a medical id on your loved one, you may not think you will need it in the early stages of Alzheimer's but I think you should for two reasons: 1. It only takes a second for them to get out of your sight and they can move fast when they want to 2. They have to get used to wearing one, in later stages some will try to take it off if they are not used to it.

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    • profile image

      TommysPal 4 years ago

      My father has Alzheimers and my mother gets so frustrated with him. I try to tell her that he's probably just as frustrated. I will recommend this lens to her. Thank you for sharing this information with the world.

    • TheBLU26 profile image

      TheBLU26 4 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this! Very informative and helpful!

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @flycatcherrr: Thank you

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @WritingForChange: (((hugs)))

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @Rosanna Grace: I understand that feeling so well. Please reach out to friends and a surport group they are there to help and aways there to listen :-)

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @Elsie Hagley: thanks :-)

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @KyraB: Thanks. It great that you had that time with your Great Grandma. Sounds like she was a very loving person

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @artbyrodriguez: Thank you

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks Gale :-)

    • English-lion profile image
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      English-lion 4 years ago

      You're welcome. Ihope it helps

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Can really tell you used to support the as a care aide. The field is missing out on an amazing caregiver when you left the field

    • artbyrodriguez profile image

      Beverly Rodriguez 4 years ago from Albany New York

      Great subject and well done lens.

    • profile image

      getmoreinfo 4 years ago

      Thanks for explaining what loved one's can do if they are faced with a family member with Dementia or Alzheimer's

    • profile image

      KyraB 4 years ago

      Good tips and ideas. We took care of my Great Grandma for 5 1/2 years and she had dementia. It was hard especially at the very last, I am so thankful though that we got all that time with her. She was very sweet and most of the time easy to take care of (for having dementia) as she was very patient with us.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 4 years ago from New Zealand

      Thanks for the information, it is very comforting. Blessed.

    • Rosanna Grace profile image

      Rosanna Grace 4 years ago

      I like your information for care givers. It's sometimes a lonely place to be in and any thoughtful advice really does help.

    • WritingForChange profile image

      WritingForChange 4 years ago

      My Dad passed on a few years ago after many years of suffering.Information for caregivers is so important. Thanks for broaching this topic. I still find it painful to write about.

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 4 years ago

      Been there, done the care-giving, back there again... Your advice to step into the world of the person with dementia, instead of trying to drag them back into contact with our reality, is spot on. Good information here.

    • sockii profile image

      Nicole Pellegrini 4 years ago from New Jersey

      Excellent advice and useful information.