Whether you expected that your senior had Alzheimer’s disease or not, an official diagnosis can change all sorts of plans that you and she had for her later years. What you need to do now is regroup and determine what happens now that you know she’s got Alzheimer’s disease.
Make Sure Your Senior Is as Safe as Possible
Talk to your senior about how safe she feels at home and in general. It can be difficult to determine what changes need to be made right away in order to improve your senior’s safety. Take a tour through her home with her and see if there’s anything that you can adjust or improve. Adding safety devices now, like hand rails in the bathrooms, can help her to be used to those tools being there when she does need them more.
You May Start to Notice Little Changes That Are Confusing
Part of what prompted your senior to get her diagnosis could be some changes that she’s experienced and was concerned about, but you both may start to see other little changes that may seem odd, too. Your elderly family member might start to get agitated more often, or engage in repetitive behaviors when she’s flustered. Wandering can start to become an issue, too, although this is usually a bigger concern in the later stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
Putting Some Routines and Structure Together Can Help
Routines and structure give your senior a framework to operate within. She may not fully understand or recognize when she’s engaging in behaviors related to Alzheimer’s disease, but she may very well recognize when things “aren’t right.” This can be a frustrating experience for her because there’s nothing that she can do about these changes. Having set times for meals as well as for other activities can help her to trust her routines and relax into them.
It’s Definitely Not Too Early to Start Thinking about Help
It’s never too early in the caregiving experience to get extra help, but the same is doubly true when your elderly family member has Alzheimer’s disease. You’re going to need as much help as you can get to manage the changes you’re experiencing, too. Experienced elder care providers can help you to understand more about what your senior is going through and how to help her in the best ways possible.
This is a complicated time for both you and your senior. There’s a lot to learn and a lot to become accustomed to.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care in Evanston, IL, contact the caring staff at Companion Services of America today at (847) 943-3786. Our home care service area includes Northbrook, Highland Park, Deerfield, Glenview, Buffalo Grove, Evanston, Des Plaines, Skokie, Lake Forest, Wilmette and the surrounding areas.