6 Alzheimer's Caregiver Tips And Ideas from Senior Care Center


6 Alzheimer's Caregiver Tips And Ideas from Senior Care Center

Although most caregivers are naturally patient and caring, caring for someone with dementia or Alzheimer's can be quite a challenge. The experience is scarier if you have to do it with no training at all. This article we created with Senior Care Center, however, outlines a few of the essential Alzheimer's caregiver resources and tips to help you, (experienced or new caregiver) have more control and feel calmer when handing an older adult.

[ photo: pexels.com by martin pechy ]


1. Get An Accurate Diagnosis

Have the patient checked first to ensure the diagnosis is correct.  Some treatable medical conditions may have similar symptoms as Alzheimer's, one of the reasons you need to be sure of his/her cognitive issues. 

In addition to this, have a specialist with dementia or a geriatrician examine and evaluate the patient just to be sure. Don't just go with the first screening test the patient had. The expert should also be able to identify the form of dementia the patient has. This way he/she will provide you with info on behaviors to expect as well as other symptoms.

2. Understand The Disease

As mentioned earlier, caring for an Alzheimer's patient is both stressful and confusing. Taking time to understand the disease will however help you cope with the changes better. That said, create time to learn about the disease, read online journals about it, how to care for the patient, and expected symptoms and behaviors as the condition progresses. 

Have the facts right about dementia before you can take on caring for the patient. Armed with the information, you'll know what to do when certain symptoms show, and how to handle the patient as well.

3. Learn Better Ways To Communicate With The Patient

Communication methods matter a lot when dealing with an Alzheimer's patient according to Senior Care Center. How well you connect or communicate with the patient will determine if he/she will get agitated easily or not. Learning to keep calm and communicating with the patient will make your work easier with fewer episodes of arguments and frustration. 

Although you might know this already, correcting someone with dementia can come back to haunt you. The same applies to your body language, attitude, and even telling the truth. You may be forced to lie at times just to avoid an argument or frustration.

4. Learn New And Proven Ways To Manage Difficult Behaviors

Dementia and Alzheimer's cause an adult's behavior to change rapidly and sometimes to the worst.  Handling or dealing with someone with such a complex brain disease requires lots of patience and humility. Some behaviors are difficult to handle even for the most seasoned caregivers. For this reason, you need to learn new ways to handle most of their questions and behaviors. One way to do this is by giving the patient the answer they wish to hear, even if it isn't true.

5. Spend Quality Time With The Patient

Almost every brain disease changes the person- most will act differently or become agitated pretty fast. This, however, doesn’t mean they don't deserve care and love. Learn to spend quality time with him/her. Identify the things he/she likes, then do it together. This assures them of safety, makes them happier, and even get to love you in the process.

Most of the activities, hobbies, and conversations you have with the patient will change as the disease progresses. Some behaviors do not however change. Simple things such as listening to their favorite jams, reminiscing over family photos, and looking at picture books come in handy at advanced stages. 

6. Take Breaks Regularly

Caregiving is one of the most stressful careers today. Learning to manage stress and take a break when you feel exhausted however helps keep your body and mind in good shape. 

That said, consider taking a break whenever tired. Caregiving isn't just one person's job, but responsibility for everyone around the senior. Make use of hired helpers, friends, family, and outside programs too These should allow you to get the much-needed break to revitalize.

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