Witnessing an elderly relative suffer from dementia is difficult for even the strongest individuals and families. Sometimes our natural instinct is to pretend that it’s not happening or that it’s not affecting our senior nearly as much as it is. Seeing them struggle can cause anger and unmanageable emotional pain. Alzheimer’s is debilitating but there are many measures you and the rest of your family can take to cope and make the best of a difficult situation.
- Acknowledge the Issue: It’s never a wise idea to ignore a loved one’s dementia. Adults often think they’re protecting young children by acting as if nothing is wrong. However, even young children are capable of sensing the personality changes and memory loss. You don’t want to promote the idea that there is a shameful quality to the situation, so speak openly about it, acknowledge it, and be honest.
- Get the Facts: After a relative is diagnosed with dementia, you’ll want to learn all pertinent information to prepare for what comes next. Your relative’s physician is an excellent resource who can address concerns, provide advice for coping, and even recommend worthwhile support groups for families of Alzheimer’s sufferers.
- Set a Positive Mood: You’re a role model for your children, and they will feel and reflect whatever positive or negative emotions you display. Speak to your senior in a positive tone of voice and demonstrate your affection for them through body language and words.
- Show You Care: It is important to demonstrate at all times that you truly care about your elderly relative and sympathize with what they’re going through. Visit frequently, call, and assist with difficult tasks. Let your actions speak loudly and show your family that you’ll do anything in your power to remain a positive part of a senior’s life.
If you have a relative suffering from dementia, treat them right by sending them to Whitcomb House in Milford. Call us at (508) 634-2440 to learn about our memory care programs that will treat your famnily member with compassion and respect.