"Alzheimer's is a family disease...It requires countless hours of care, which are typically provided by family caregivers...Without professional help, it can be impossible to juggle providing that care with jobs, raising kids, or just time for yourself." Seth Rogen shared this insight regarding the daunting task of managing care for a loved one suffering from Alzheimer's while maintaining your lifestyle and already hectic schedule.
In addition to the confusion and pain the diagnosed individual is enduring, their family suffers through the experience of witnessing someone they love decline. While being there for them is important, it is also vital that you remember to take care of yourself as well. Self care is one of the most crucial parts of being a caregiver. The stress of such a situation can build up which can spill over into other aspects of your life. Stress can make it difficult to get the sleep your body needs and you can become ill. Pay attention to your own health as well, and look into finding a local support group near you. A great resource for finding Alzheimer's support groups in the Treasure Valley is on the Alzheimer's Association website, just click here.
Gaining an understanding of the disease can be helpful as well, and knowledge of what your loved one is going through can assist when dealing with stressful situations. If possible, visit with your loved one's doctor or you can do your own research. Remembering to differentiate between the disease and the patient can be challenging, especially if they are a family member. A strong support system and a daily routine are steps that can be taken to decrease the strain on your relationship with the patient.
Those with Alzheimer's are still able to follow schedules and this should be utilized, as a predictable routine will reduce confusion. It's important to remember that they may need a substantial amount of time to accomplish a task on their own, but if this is planned for in a daily schedule the possibility of a stressful situation arising is reduced.
Caring for someone with Alzheimer's is stressful and challenging. Finding ways to manage that stress is vital to your well-being so that you can meet those challenges in a positive manner.