Hundreds of people are now becoming an Alzheimer’s caregiver, especially to their loved ones. This is a big responsibility and a tough commitment to any particular person. It is unfortunate that many individuals who are acting as a caregiver to patients with Alzheimer’s have no formal caregiver training, which leaves them to just sit and watch their loved ones as they go through this progressive disease. It is always a challenging journey for every Alzheimer’s caregiver. In this regard, here are 5 tips to remember as you take on these new and challenging responsibilities as an .
When we think of caregiving, we immediately think of caregivers who risk their time and their own health in order to provide the best care for our senior loved ones, especially those who need care full-time. Most caregivers come from the family such as the children or other family members who are able to handle the situation, while some are hired help and complete strangers.
There are a lot of ways on how Caregiving can change one’s life. Take Elaine Tugman for example.
In 2000, she found out she was pregnant. For Tugman, it was her second child, just barely a year after her other daughter was born. However, things turned for a twist as she delivered her baby 4 months before she was due. Thus, she found herself to be a caregiver for a child with special needs.
Contrary to popular belief, caregivers are not professionals trained in schools, the majority of their training is being done at home by a relative or a close friend. It may be a spouse, a daughter or a son, an in-law or their best friend. In fact, 70% of caregivers are composed of these people. Though we are trained since we were young to prepare for a life outside the classroom and to be able to support our own families, we are not as prepared to face a life that few people are prepared for: elderly care.
You only grow elderly once in your lifetime, this is something many fail to see whenever they care for a senior. Yes, you may be caring for someone, but some day you will be in their shoes and that’s why it is important for caregivers to give the best for their seniors. However, we do admit that not everyone is perfect and caring for a senior is not a walk in the park.
The life of a caregiver is very demanding, especially with all the expectations and adjustments that one has to go through, but that doesn’t mean you have to forget about yourself. Here are a few ways on how you can survive as a caregiver.
It is common for children to say that they don’t have an appetite and would rather play than eat their vegetables, however it becomes a concern when the elderly doesn’t eat and claim that they don’t have an appetite.
According to Heather Schwarts who is a nutrition expert at the Stanford Hospital and Clinics, lack of appetite in seniors mostly thirst is a common occurrence in aging, however is it still something to be concerned about?
Let us first look into the reason why loss of appetite is normal. Though it is not a major concern, it is still something to look out for if they suddenly eat less and less. There are a lot of factors that contributed to a senior’s appetite.
These days we have forgotten what Thanksgiving is all about. We are more focused on what would be served on the table, how the house should look like and who to invite for Thanksgiving dinner. However, despite the consumeristic approach of this day, we still manage to be thankful for something. This is something that should be re-focused for Thanksgiving especially for the ones that need it the most.
You might want to start rethinking about hitting that all-night sleep. Studies are suggesting that the lack of sleep and sleep disturbances leads to Alzheimer’s disease.
According to a study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, the chemical changes in brain cells caused by lack of sleep (resulting into a jet lag-like effect) contributes to learning and memory loss. Though some may consider their sleep disturbances as something normal, older adults experience this more frequently. These becomes more severe when Alzheimer’s disease is apparent.
Sleep problems that commonly affect people with Alzheimer’s are:
Happy Family Caregivers Month!
There’s no other joy than being of service to others, but especially to your aging loved ones. Being a family caregiver is not just a thankless job but it is a special vocation that anyone can commit to – just as long as they have the heart and patience to fulfill their tasks as a carer.