What Should I Do if My Aging Parent Is Diagnosed with Dementia?

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In-Home Care Annapolis

Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most common forms of dementia, and while dementia is often a condition of advancing age, some people may develop early-onset dementia. Symptoms of dementia may include memory loss, confusion, and, in some cases, agitation and combativeness. If your aging parent receives a dementia diagnosis, here are some steps to take that may enhance his or her quality of life and minimize your challenges as a caregiver.

 

Seek Medical Guidance

One of the first steps you should take after your parent receives a dementia diagnosis is to seek guidance from his or her primary care physician. The doctor will help you understand the type of dementia your loved one has and which stage of dementia he or she is in. The healthcare provider will also recommend various treatment options that can help you handle your loved one’s condition most effectively based on his or her specific needs, strengths, and limitations.

Caring for a loved one with dementia is a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities can 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 Annapolis home care service 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. Assisting Hands Home Care is here to help.

 

Establish Familiar Routines

People with dementia typically benefit from familiar and consistent routines. After your parent receives the dementia diagnosis, make sure to set consistent mealtimes and sleep routines because by doing so, he or she will feel more in control, safe, and secure. In addition, establishing consistent daily routines that include both physical exercise and mental stimulation can enhance mood, boost cognitive function, and promote wellbeing.

 

Maintain a Supportive Environment

Ensuring your parent’s living space is safe and calm can minimize his or her anxiety and confusion. Make sure you eliminate all hazards, ensure the floors are uncluttered and dry and the lighting is adequate, and, if needed, install safety grab bars beside the toilet and in the bathtub or shower.

When guests are visiting the home, ask them to speak in low tones so your parent doesn’t become agitated and anxious. Keeping the volume on the television low and playing calming music can also promote a supportive and peaceful environment for your loved one to thrive in and enjoy.

A professional caregiver with training and expertise in caring for seniors with dementia can be a wonderful asset for your whole family. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care. You can rely on Assisting Hands Home Care to provide an individualized home care Annapolis plan to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our caregivers help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits, such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and we offer mentally stimulating activities that can strengthen cognitive function and delay the progression of dementia.

 

Provide Emotional Support

One of the most important things you can do after your parent has been diagnosed with dementia is to offer emotional support. While your loved one’s dementia may result in a decrease in cognitive function and memory, he or she can still experience emotions such as fear and apprehension. When your parent has been given a dementia diagnosis, he or she may feel uncertain and afraid about the future. Offering emotional support and reassurance can ease your loved one’s mind so he or she can enjoy a better quality of life and focus on a positive and productive future.

Spending quality time with your loved one and engaging in enjoyable activities can be therapeutic and essential to his or her wellbeing. In addition, seeking emotional support for yourself from caregiver groups, friends, and family can help you manage stress and overcome some of the challenges you may face as a dementia caregiver.

Even when families have the best intentions, caring for a senior loved one with dementia can be challenging. Fortunately, Assisting Hands Home Care is here to help. We are a leading provider of dementia care. Annapolis families can take advantage of our flexible and customizable care plans, and our caregivers always stay up to date on the latest developments in senior care. Call (667) 226-9360 today to speak with a friendly and experienced Care Manager to formulate a home care plan for your loved one.