Cultivating Compassion for Alzheimer’s
August 21, 2019
There are more than five million Americans suffering from the degenerative brain condition known as Alzheimer’s Disease. Today, there is still no cure, so the emphasis is placed on making the sufferers’ daily life as stress-free as we can.
The Necessity of Compassion
It’s of key importance that we have compassion and empathy for those in our lives who suffer from this disease that strips aging adults of their memories. It can be difficult to care for those with Alzheimer’s when you yourself have never been in their shoes, but imagining how confusing and stressful it must be just to live their daily lives can help us be kinder and more compassionate with them.
Caring for a Loved One with Alzheimer’s
If you’re a family member of someone with this disease and also have the responsibility of being their primary caregiver, it’s helpful to keep these tips in mind:
Be realistic about their progression.
It can be tough to face the fact that the person you once knew will never fully return. But holding onto the memory and showing your loved one your pain and longing for who they used to be will only serve to confuse them more and make it difficult for them to cope with their own disease. It is normal to be upset and hurt by the memory loss of a loved one, but it’s essential that you are realistic with yourself about the severity of their dementia so that you can provide the best care possible.
Remember that dementia is more than memory loss.
There are additional symptoms of this disease that can be a result of the memory loss or just other side effects of the progression of Alzheimer’s. Some common things to look out for and try to be compassionate about are:
- Personality changes
- Unpleasant attitudes
- Difficulty speaking or writing
- Unfamiliarity with visual cues
- Misplacing items
- Poor judgment
- Withdrawal from social activities
Learn to be empathetic.
Empathy is a necessity in all relationships, but it’s especially important when you’re caring for someone with dementia. Imagine yourself in their position: feeling like you’re lost when you’re just sitting on the couch at home, seeing family members as complete strangers, losing interest in the things you once loved, becoming extremely confused at random times. Do your best to treat your loved one how you would like to be treated if you were in their shoes.
Top-Quality Dementia Care in Columbia, MD
With four locations throughout Howard County, Kenwood Care has established a reputation for providing high-quality senior care to aging Maryland residents for almost 20 years. We pride ourselves on having the training and experience to give those with Alzheimer’s and other conditions the attention and care they need to age as comfortably as possible. Contact us today to learn more about the assisted living services we can provide your aging loved one with dementia.