Living with dementia can be a challenging experience, both for the person affected and for their caretaker. This is inevitable due to the changes in memory, behavior, and communication. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach, here are some tips to so you can give the best care possible.
- Stay Present
It’s easy to become overwhelmed and to focus on what has been lost. Instead, focus on the present moment and the tasks and activities that can still be enjoyed. A great way to do this is through exercise and social engagement. Both you and your loved one should participate in social activities, hobbies & interests that you both enjoy.
- Provide Structure.
People living with dementia can benefit from having a regular routine with reminders, notes, and visual cues. Having structure reduces anxiety and confusion. Their routine should also encourage independence as much as possible so consider installing railings, non-slip mats, and night lights. In turn this maintains their sense of self & boosts self-esteem.
- Communicate effectively.
As your loved one’s condition progresses, communication will become trickier. Be patient and stick to simple language, avoiding ‘yes’ and ‘no’ questions as these can be confusing. There is also a wide range of professional help available, such as support groups, respite care, and specialist dementia services.
Following these tips, you’ll notice an improvement in mood for everyone as well as better memory, balance and coordination. Living with dementia can be difficult, but with the right support and strategies quality of life can be maintained.
If you’d like to learn more or are considering a nursing home or assisted living for a loved one in northern NJ, The Little Nursing Home of Montclair offers a cozy and calm atmosphere with the comforts of home. Call or email us for more info to schedule a tour.