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Helping a Loved One With Dementia

Helping a Loved One With Dementia

There are many forms of dementia, including vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Regardless of which type of dementia your loved one has, it’s essential to get the proper treatment from a specialized team.

Here at Link Neuroscience Institute, our team offers several dementia treatments to help manage symptoms as much as possible and slow down disease progression. 

In addition to providing treatments and medications, our multidisciplinary neurosurgery team wants to help you learn about dementia so you can better help a loved one with dementia. We can help you understand the type of dementia and the types of medication needed, and we’re more than happy to answer all your questions when you’re here for appointments.

We’ve also created this guide to provide additional tips for helping a loved one with dementia.

Helping a loved one with dementia

There are many ways to help and support a loved one with dementia. Whether you’re the primary caregiver or provide supplemental support when needed, some or all of these may apply to your situation:

Daily care

Individuals with dementia likely require help with daily routines and daily tasks. You can help them by:

Bathing and dressing can be tricky, especially if your loved one doesn’t want much help in these areas. When bathing or attending to other grooming needs, be gentle and respectful. Always provide a verbal step-by-step of everything you are doing.

Provide assistive tools (such as shower aids), and allow your loved one to do as much as possible. For example, easy-to-don clothing with elastic waistbands or larger zippers may be easier for your loved one to use and retain some independence. 

Ensuring the home is safe

One of the best things you can do to help your family member is to ensure their home is safe, and if not, take steps to make it safer. Safety tips include:

This is just a small sample of safety measures you take. The National Institute on Aging has created a thorough checklist for your use.

Establish healthy habits

Eating healthy and staying active are two pillars of good health, and they’re especially helpful for those with dementia. Here are a few ways you can help your loved one stay active and eat healthily:

Exercise can also help stimulate appetites. Eating can be a challenge, especially if your loved one doesn’t recognize their favorite foods or if their sense of taste is changing. Keep your table setting simple, and use assistive tools if needed. Offer one new food at a time, and most importantly, eat together.

Learn as much as you can

You can also learn as much as you can about dementia. The more you know, the more you can feel empowered to help in the most supportive ways. You may also benefit from support groups.

Take care of yourself

As the saying goes, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” Caregivers need care too! Don’t forget to take time for your own self-care. 

To learn more about dementia management, give us a call or use our online scheduling tool to book an appointment.

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