It's never easy to leave your loved one in someone else's care. For Alzheimer's patients, they may need skilled supervision from professional caregivers who know more about the disease and how to care for your loved one. Sometimes, knowing what to ask can help you better understand the disease and what you can do for your loved one at a care facility. Most of all, you can learn ways to continue to connect with your loved one that will be meaningful to you both.
1. What's the most important thing for me to do to help my loved one?
Understanding the disease is vital. The more you know, the more you can make the right decisions for your loved one. With knowledge of the disease, it may be easier to allow your loved one to have special care in a facility centered around memory loss. The National Institute on Aging (NIH) offers a good recap with the "Alzheimer's Disease Fact Sheet."
- Three Stages of Alzheimer's: Mild, Moderate, and Severe
- Clinical Trial Possibilities: Volunteers are needed to better understand the disease.
- Current Therapy Approaches: Maintain Mental Function, Manage Behavioral Changes, and Slow Down Problems as Memory Loss
- Research for the Underlying Cause: Stop and Prevent
2. Are there any treatments for my loved one?
While there is no cure for Alzheimer's, there are "two types of drugs" that may help to "manage symptoms of the disease," as found on the Mayo Clinic site. "Unfortunately, Alzheimer's drugs don't work for everyone, and they can't cure the disease or stop its progression. Over time, their effects wear off."
3. How can I make the most of my visits with my loved one?
DailyCaring gives an excellent review of what to do and not to do when visiting your loved one. As explained, your loved one "may still enjoy having visitors." The first thing to know that it takes skillful planning for you and your loved one "to have a positive experience."
- Keep the number of visitors to "1 or 2."
- Visit during the times when your loved one is known to be at his/her best.
- The more peaceful and calm your loved one's surroundings are, the better the visit should go.
- Use the list of "21 essential do's and don'ts" to prepare for your visits. The don'ts are extremely important, as also found on HuffPost.
4. Is there a special gift that I may bring my loved one?
On the NIH fact sheet, you learned about the progression of the disease. Depending on your loved one's progression of the disease, some gifts may be well-received and bring them joy, as listed on Alzheimer's.net. If your loved one is in his/her early stage, you may want to help them prepare a memory box.
5. What should I do when my loved one is in the late stage of Alzheimer's?
Even though your loved one may not be able to express themselves, but it is not clear how much Alzheimer's patients know and understand. One thing for certain your loved one still needs you and Verywell Health offers six tips that may help you and your loved one enjoy your visits.
- A Loving "Touch"
- Talk and "Smile"
- Enjoy the "Outdoors"
- "Play Music"
- Enjoy a "Relaxing DVD"
- Accept the Unacceptable Days
If you are researching options for a loved one with Alzheimer's in need of extra care, Cadbury Park Assisted Living and Memory Care at Jacaranda Trace is where your loved one will receive the care and compassion for a better way to live. We offer specialized care that will give your loved one a place to call home in safe and secure surroundings.