A dementia diagnosis often leaves families shocked and reeling from the news, and it’s too easy to get caught up in thinking about the worst-case scenarios. Fortunately, seniors with dementia often enjoy a high quality of life for many years after their diagnoses, but it does take work and careful planning to address each new challenge. Now that you have an explanation for your senior loved one’s symptoms, you can move forward by using these strategies to provide the best care possible.
Gather Information About Your Loved One’s Diagnosis
After a dementia diagnosis, you need to learn as much as possible about your loved one’s personal prognosis. There are several different types of dementia, and each one can have unique symptoms and progress slightly differently over time. Your loved one’s current level of health and independence will also play a role in how well he or she handles the diagnosis over time. Grab a binder and start to collect as much information as you can about your loved one’s specific health concerns as well as general knowledge about dementia that helps you feel comfortable making decisions about care options.
Inquire About Your Loved One’s Preferences
When your loved one is in the early stages of the disease, it’s best for him or her to have as much say as possible regarding care. Being able to choose to age in place or meet a new caregiver before care begins empowers your loved one to continue to work with everyone to maintain his or her health. You’ll also feel good knowing the choices you make are aligned with how your loved one wants to live out the senior years.
Getting your loved one’s input early is best because confusion, anger, and frustration are common in elderly people with dementia, especially in the later stages. Dementia can be challenging for seniors to manage, but they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional dementia care. Vancouver seniors can benefit greatly from the Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program designed to promote cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia. CTM is included at no additional charge with any of the in-home care plans provided by Home Care Assistance.
Focus on Preserving Your Loved One’s Current Abilities
Staying positive is important right now, and one way to keep a positive attitude is to make plans for how you can help your loved one retain his or her thinking and reasoning skills. For instance, you can set aside time each day to do a puzzle together, or you can find a class that helps your loved one continue to learn new things. Your care plan should also include strategies that promote independent living that fits your loved one’s abilities. Continuing to do things such as cooking and visiting with friends may slow the progression of the disease.
A professional caregiver with training and expertise in methods of cognitive stimulation can be a wonderful asset for seniors with dementia. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care. Vancouver families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
Set Up a Medication Management Plan
Your loved one’s dementia diagnosis will likely include new prescriptions for medications that control the disease. Your loved one may already be taking medications, and the new diagnosis increases the risk of having a mishap. Create a medication management plan that works for both you and your loved one so he or she can easily track when the last dose was taken.
Caring for a loved one with dementia can be a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities may sometimes feel overwhelming, but help is available. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Vancouver senior home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. If you need professional care for your loved one, Home Care Assistance is just a phone call away. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (778) 715-5134.