Have you ever tried to communicate with someone who has Alzheimer’s, and you end up feeling frustrated and awkward?
Communicating with someone who has Alzheimer’s can be challenging to deal with daily, but it is achievable. The disease affects the brain in ways that make communication for that individual difficult. Today, over half a million individuals are living with Alzheimer’s, plus about 25,000 new cases diagnosed every year.
Listed below are some strategies and things you can do daily to help your family member dealing with Alzheimer’s.
Do not ask, “do you remember?”
This is a common phrase that most people will find themselves saying to family members they have experienced memories with. The thing to remember about people living with Alzheimer’s, there will be moments they will remember and other moments they will not. Other than asking, “do you remember”? try starting the conversation with a statement. This way, you are not putting them on the spot that could cause them frustration or embarrassment.
Never talk down
This is a very straight forward tip; talking down to anyone is something most people do not enjoy because it belittles that person. Remember, when making conversation with someone with Alzheimer’s, being kind is the best course of action.
Although it can be frustrating and upsetting to know someone with Alzheimer’s, patience is the best practice. Never push someone with Alzheimer’s to be who they use to be.
The best way to care for someone with Alzheimer’s is to put them on a schedule daily. With most patients, activities like dressing, bathing, eating and memory games can keep them on a daily routine they could potentially remember.
Be honest with them
There is no need to hide things from them. Be honest with them about their disease. Be gentle and remind them of things and if they ask you why they do not remember things, tell them the truth.
Keep them involved
Do not dis-include them from anything. Keep them updated on family life, work-life and make them feel like their presence is wanted.
Focus on feelings
It is essential daily to ask them how they feel, focus on their feelings, emotions, and express it to you. Keeping track of their moods throughout the day can help you understand them better, and it can also be a guidance for their doctor.
Do not argue
Referring back to tip 3, be patient with them. Getting upset with them when they do not remember something will cause frustration among them, along with you. Keep a relaxed tone with them always, so they feel safe where they are.
Always remember the person behind the Alzheimer’s. For more information on Alzheimer’s, check out