Five Important Tips For Living With Someone With Alzheimer's

Posted on: 11 September 2017

Living with a family member or loved one who's dealing with Alzheimer's can be extremely challenging. You need to be patient and put effort into educating yourself on how to deal with all of the difficult and surprising situations that may come up.

The following are five important tips for living with someone with Alzheimer's that should help you cope with all the challenges you face:

Try to use old information the patient has learned rather than attempting to teach the patient new things

One important thing to be aware of regarding Alzheimer's patients is that they tend to have trouble learning new information.

It's best not to change things up when you're living with an Alzheimer's patient. Keep things as they are and don't look to improve ways of dealing with everyday necessities such as bathing and eating if they require the patient to learn new processes or information. 

Be prepared for aggression and outbursts from the patient

You may have known the Alzheimer's patient you're living with all your life, and you may know them as a gentle and patient person. However, Alzheimer's can sometimes significantly change an individual's temperament.

Don't be surprised if your family member or loved one shows aggressions and outbursts of anger as their condition worsens. 

Allow yourself to take a break from things once in a while

Even if you're responsible for living with an Alzheimer's patient, that doesn't mean you should let the responsibility take over your life.

If you never give yourself the chance to get a break from caring for an Alzheimer's patient, you may begin to feel overwhelmed as time goes on. Make sure you find someone to give you a break from time to time, like another family member or a home health care professional who can sit in for you on a regular basis. 

Stay away from forcing the patient to do something or using negative language

It's always best to talk a patient into doing some vital task like eating or attending a doctor's appointment rather than forcing the patient. You should also avoid saying no too frequently to a patient and frustrate his or her desires.

Always be upbeat and cheerful when dealing with an Alzheimer's patient, and make sure that it's clear to the patient that his or her preferences and desires are always taken into account. 

Be prepared for emotionally draining situations

As the condition of Alzheimer's patients worsens, they can become very emotional while also being more likely to forget the identity of important people in their lives. You need to be prepared for these situations and understand that the patient's memory loss is only going to get more severe over time.