Important Alzheimer And Dementia Home Care Tips
Individuals who suffer from dementia face great difficulties on a daily basis. And the reality is that the disease is more common than most people think. As Lee Prokaska informs us on Alzlive.com, approximately a third of all Canadians aged 65 or older are bound to develop some form of dementia, most notably Alzheimer’s disease.
He also reminds us that our population is aging. “Ten million baby boomers will turn 65 in the next 20 years,” Prokaska writes, “Today, about 750,000 Canadians live with some form of cognitive impairment. By 2031, about 1.4 million Canadians will be living with some degree of cognitive impairment.”
Unquestionably, caregivers of dementia sufferers have tough tasks. In our experience, here at Senior Homecare, they need all the help they can get. With that, we’d like to offer these three very important Alzheimer and dementia home care tips.
1. Make the home as fall-proof as possible.
It will likely come as no surprise to you that slips and falls are among the most common culprits for hospitalizations among Canada’s elderly. In fact, falls are the leading cause of injuries among Canadians 65 years and over. According to The Safe Living Guide issued by the Public Health Agency of Canada, “between 20% and 30% of community-dwelling Canadian seniors experience one fall each year.”
To minimize the chances of your elderly loves one falling, keep your floors as clutter-free as possible. That includes tucking away extension cords, clearing away shoes, clothes and any other personal items and removing throw rugs. Throw rugs are widely known to bunch up, creating severe tripping hazards. You’ll also want to be sure to put non-slip mats and grab bars in the bathroom. It’s the room of the home most notorious for its slippery surfaces. Additionally, ensure night lights are put in every room, so they can see in the late hours of the evening.
2. Maintain predictable daily routines.
Dementia is widely known for impacting a person’s memory. It’s important, therefore, to engage sufferers in the same daily routines, day in and day out. The repetition is expected to lessen confusion and encourage predictability – two methods of assisting with memory. Performing the same daily routines each day will help dementia sufferers to perform some tasks themselves. This also greatly helps with caregiver stress.
“Schedule the most difficult tasks, such as bathing or medical appointments, for the time of day when your family member tends to be most calm and agreeable,” advises Gerry Gatto of Senior Homecare by Angels, “ Over time, if your family member experiences behavioural changes or frustration in the evening, or “sundowning”, you may need to switch some routines like bathing to the morning.”
“Activities such as dressing, grooming, bathing and eating can form a pattern in daily living,” says the Alzheimer Society of Canada, “Routines help the person with dementia know what to expect, and help her to continue to do things on her own. Doing so will make her feel better about herself.”
3. Utilize coping mechanisms.
No list of dementia home care tips is complete without recognizing the health of the caregivers. There’s no question that caring for a dementia sufferer can take a heavy toll on one’s emotional well-being. It’s tough. Finding ways to ease the pressure of your responsibilities is integral to both yourself and your loved one.
At Senior Homecare by Angels, we are here to help, knowing that you can’t do everything by yourself. We pride ourselves on providing your elderly loved ones with the best customer service and homecare in Calgary. Contact us today to set up a free in-home consultation so that we can help you select the appropriate homecare plan for the dementia sufferer in your life. Our plans are designed to meet your specific needs and are based primarily on frequency of visits
Please don’t hesitate to call us at 403-862-0129 OR toll-free at 1-877-209-6142 or visit our Contact Us page to complete and submit a simple contact form!
~ Senior Homecare by Angels Calgary Team