It is well-known that Alzheimer brings with it memory loss and confusion. However, the illness also makes things difficult for caregivers because of the multitude of behavioral changes. Yes, people with Alzheimer’s go through several changes in their behavior. He or she may gradually become suspicious, angry, stressed or confused. Many family caregivers struggle hard to deal with difficult Alzheimer’s behavioral changes. If you are one among them, here are the tips to deal with the same.
Establish a daily routine
Establishing a routine means the care recipient will know what to expect and the confusion will be less. Any change in the daily routine can trigger anger and confusion.
Do not try to use logic
No matter how much it looks unacceptable or stupid; do not try to use logic to explain to them that they are wrong. A person suffering from Alzheimer’s will not be able to process the information and will feel even more helpless.
Make their daily tasks easy
It is easy for a person with Alzheimer’s to become highly confused when he or she has to pick one from a pile of clothes. So to not make choosing what to wear baffling for them, give them only two options instead of the entire wardrobe. It is vital to keep their mind clutter-free.
Engage them in activities
Keep them engaged in some activity like seeking their help in setting the dinner table or completing a jigsaw puzzle. When you keep them engaged for most of the time, they have a sense of contribution and self-worth.
Sometimes, Alzheimer patients often hallucinate about non-existent things. They become frightened and become concerned about their safety. So, instead of denial, reassure them that they are safe with you. You can keep photos of their close friends or family members or even a stuffed toy to make them feel safe.
Redirect their attention
Try to redirect their attention to make them calm. Try different ways to know which can be most appropriate for them. For example, just start discussing a hobby which they like or take them outside to change their imagery. You can also divert their attention to another room or a specific object. Stay calm and make sure your body language is not making them stressful.
Give them space to retreat
While it is always good to encourage them for interacting with their friends or loved ones, it is a wise idea to give them a space to retreat whenever they want. You can always reconnect with them over a cup of tea or coffee.
Use the power of humor
Sometimes things become too frustrating for a caregiver when the person with Alzheimer’s is continuously taking about invisible things or is not ready to bath or have a meal. So, when nothing works, use humor to change the context.
If you become frustrated, the situation will become worse. Caring for a loved one with difficult behavioral changes can be exhausting. So, also try to take out some time for your well-being. Try to practice yoga or meditation or go for a morning walk in a park.
There are many people like you who are caregivers who are dealing with difficult Alzheimer-related behavioral changes. So, know that you are not alone. If you are struggling as a caregiver, try to find some support from other caregivers or look for free resources over the web for caregiving tips that can help you.