We take great pride here at Manor Lake Assisted Living and Memory Care here in Ellijay to share our knowledge and stories to help as many people as possible. For those of you struggling to care for loved ones in need of memory care support, we understand your challenges and the huge labor of love that you bear.
Today we’ll share with you the most common symptoms shared by Alzheimer’s and related dementia disorders. The symptoms include any combination of the following:
- Memory Loss – People may forget things they’ve learned as well as dates and events. They may also ask for the same information repeatedly.
- Trouble Planning or Solving Problems – You may notice a loved one taking longer to complete tasks they used to be able to do much quicker. You may also notice they have trouble following directions, even a simple recipe becomes complex.
- Confusion with Time or Place – People with Alzheimer’s often lose track of time. They also forget where they are and even how they got there.
- Misplacing Things & Unable to Retrace Steps – As people forget dates and events they may also start to misplace objects. Although they would be able to retrace their steps in the past and find what they were looking for, that is no longer the case. This may lead them to accuse others of stealing because they can no longer find what’s theirs.
- Mood & Personality Changes – Because of the changes that are going on in their mind, you may notice major shifts in mood and personality. They may become confused, suspicious and even depressed.
Helping People with Alzheimer’s Disease
Although there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, there are things you can do to slow its onset and to maximize your loved one’s quality of life. The ability to deliver positive effect is especially enhanced if the disease is still in its early stages.
- Keep a Daily Routine – This helps to avoid confusion and lets the person know what can be expected. Alzheimer’s patients like routines.
- Don’t Overstimulate – Keep things simple. Say one thing at a time. Present only one idea so that the person can understand it the best they can.
- Be Reassuring – Always try to make the person feel safe and comfortable. Sometimes even saying the words, “You are safe with me” is enough to make that person feel at ease.
- Don’t Yell or Argue – As frustrated as you may get, imagine how the patient feels. They can no longer grasp what is going on inside their own heads. Don’t yell or argue out of frustration. Be the calming voice they need.
While you may be able to care for an Alzheimer’s patient in the early stages of the disease, you need to realize that the challenges will become increasingly difficult. Your loved one can present a danger to themselves by wandering off or forgetting to turn off the stove. If this is the case it may be time to consider professional memory care services like those we provide here at our Gateway Gardens Assisted Living and Memory Care community. For more information about memory care services here in Ellijay, contact us anytime.