A dementia or Alzheimer’s diagnosis changes everything. The person living with the disease will experience changes every day – some subtle, some dramatic. Friends and family members witnessing these changes will have to modify how they interact with their loved one, supporting them through the challenges to come.
Part of the process is planning for care, whether the family chooses to take on full caregiving duties at home for as long as possible, bring in home care for assistance with basic daily tasks or medical care, or eventually consider a transition to assisted living/a specialized Alzheimer’s care facility. Adult day services and respite care are also available options, often providing the relief the primary caregiver needs to continue caring for the individual at home.
Regardless of the final decision (which may change throughout the course of the disease), the most important thing to remember is that Alzheimer’s caregiving should never be taken on alone. If you choose to keep your loved one at home, be sure to reach out for help from family and friends, delegating tasks like driving to doctor’s appointments, preparing meals, or seeking out care facilities/home care agencies in the area that might be appropriate.