With the holiday season coming up, it can add a lot of stress on caregivers. It is important for them to enjoy their time as well as continue to care for their loved ones. Below we have some tips listed for those caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's or Dementia.
Adjust Expectations: Only do what you reasonably do. Give yourself permission to rest. Perhaps this is a good year to let another family member sponsor a party you traditionally have at your home. Communicate new expectations with other family members.
Simplify: Flashing lights and large crowds can seem over stimulating and uncomfortable to a person with a cognitive disability. Try to limit crowds and if your loved one seems uncomfortable, move to a quieter location.
Maintain Routine: People with memory loss respond to a consistent routine. Try to stay with your daily routine as much as possible.
Celebrate Early: If your family member experiences Sundowner Syndrome (evening confusion), plan holiday festivities earlier in the day.
Stay Flexible: Remember that flexibility is key to quality dementia care. If a holiday event does not seem comfortable to your loved one, it is all right to cancel or leave early.
Enjoy Holiday Activities: Daily activities can be very enriching to the lives of persons with memory loss and their caregivers. Go ahead and bake those gingerbread men, just don't impose an unreasonable time frame on their completion or quality. Your family member may also enjoy reminiscing about joyful holiday events in the past.
Consider if the person with dementia benefits from an activity: We may want our family member to be at home or to be part of a celebration with others. In reality, the person with dementia may find the situation confusing or difficult and not benefit from being there. Consider enjoying a family gathering or party on your own and later sharing time and gifts with your loved one in a quieter setting with only one or two others present at a time.
TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF TOO!
These tips were given to us by Mountainland.