Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that causes a neurological disorder and concurrently a mild memory loss that affects the daily routine of an individual. Due to frequent forgetfulness and vision problems, Alzheimer’s patients usually have to learn the same thing over and over again. And they have to face stigma in society and rejection in the workplace.
All of this can be traumatizing to them and can even lead to suicidal thoughts. That’s why if any of your family members, friends, or even neighbors and colleagues at work is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, you need to be aware of how to help them to still be productive despite their condition.
Hence, in the following, we provide you with some tips to help any of your loved ones with Alzheimer’s improve their daily life.
1. Follow a routine
Alzheimer’s patients tend to forget things easily and struggle with following a routine. It becomes more difficult when they can’t recollect just learned information or what they did an hour ago. However, they prefer familiar tasks, habits, and places and should focus on activities that can give them pleasure.
Keeping this routine enables them to understand what they should expect, raise their mood, and keep them positive. When planning their daily routine, the following should be put into consideration:
- Their likes and dislike
- Times they feel calm and undisturbed. Things like going to doctor’s appointments or cutting their nail would be easy at that time.
- Regular sleeping and waking periods. This would allow the introduction of other plans into their daily activities.
- How they use to spend their days.
Family photos and memorable event shots should be hung around the house to make them feel more secure and connected. Best tv show series and familiar smells should also be made available so they can become acquainted with them in their daily routine. Even though it won’t be easy.
2. Be patient with them
Patience is one of the keys to living an amazing life with your loved ones with Alzheimer’s. To improve the daily life of an Alzheimer’s patient, you have to be patient with them. Most of the time, they do things without any knowledge of the result of their action.
Being hard on them won’t help. It will only worsen the situation. Whenever they do the wrong things, it is only right for you to tell them what they need to do and if you see that they feel unrest at that time, it Is better to let it go. It’s hard for them to improve their skills or recall a direction. This is why you have to be there for them, guide them, and be patient in letting them do things themselves.
Strategies to follow
- Don’t rush them, focus on only one activity at a time and ensure you guide them stepwise if they get confused.
- Give them more breaks even if it means extending the work hour. Schedule more times for each task to complete.
- Don’t abuse or criticize them if you see them spending more time on something meaningless. Just let it go, so far they derive pleasure from it.
- Don’t point out their mistake if you found them doing what they like but in the wrong way or can’t do it well.
- Be accommodating, don’t argue or use logic to condemn their behavior that seems irrational.
- Avoid correcting them every time they get things wrong.
- Don’t make them rush words or put words into their mouth when you discover they can’t remember something.
3. Limit excessive sound
People living with Alzheimer’s quickly get irritated with excess noise. It makes them feel uncomfortable and disorganized. Noises from television, radio, and large gathering should be reduced. Anything that can produce a high intensity of sound should be avoided so they can cope with their daily routine.
Strategies to limit excess sound
- Reduce volumes from radio, television, and other gadgets to the minimum.
- Television should be turned off when eating or having a conversation with Alzheimer’s patients.
- Alzheimer’s patients should not be allowed to watch violent television shows. They might think it’s real.
- Windows and doors should also be closed when they are watching television or listening to the radio to prevent contrasting sounds.
- Fewer people should stay in a room during large gatherings.
- Select music sources that aren’t disturbed by confusing gatherings.
4. Choice to review
Generally, people like making choices for themselves. People living with Alzheimer’s disease often struggle to make great choices. However, they should be given some simple choices to review and pick the one that aligns with their interest. But they shouldn’t be given complex choices to make.
Strategies to follow
- Give them two simple choices and ask them to choose one. It might be to choose between drinking a hot or cold tea or bathing rather than sleeping.
- If they picked mismatched clothing, let it go.
- If they want to wear the same clothes every day, buy multiple of the same clothes. Another way to do this is also by ensuring there are different sets of clothing in their closet to choose from.
- At a restaurant, help them make a list of their favorite foods to pick from.
5. Help them connect
People living with Alzheimer’s have problems connecting and expressing their thought in a gathering. You can help them overcome this by following these strategies:
- Make eye contact and call their name, not a nickname.
- Never use childish voices when speaking to them.
- Hold their hands while you talk or preferably touch them gently to guide them.
- Ask a yes or no question to understand their fear.
6. Give them simple task
Alzheimer’s patients should also be allowed to help in some situations such as washing plates, sweeping the floor, folding laundry, etc. Don’t just assign any task but ensure it aligns with their career or what they love doing most.
It also might be mixing ingredients for baking or a simple organizing task for someone who loves working in the office. Make it comfortable for them. This act makes them feel needed in the family.
Improving the daily life of Alzheimer’s patients is very important to their personality. However, there are some proven tips to improve their daily life which are discussed above. If these tips are duly followed, there is going to be a change in their lifestyle. Moreover, if you wish to know more about further treatment procedures for Alzheimer visit YourDementiaTherapist.com.