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Caring for Parent With Dementia at Home: How to Know When It’s No Longer Feasible

Dementia is a condition that can start slowly. At the onset it is often mistakenly identified as “just getting older,” but as it progresses slowly, they wonder if it’s something much more than natural aging. And caring for parent with dementia at home comes into question and presents many challenges. The FCA has provided a nice guide to understanding dementia behaviors and will definitely help you determine if your parent is beginning to show signs.

As the condition starts to take over the person’s mind, caring for a dementia patient may not longer be feasible. There are many reasons for this to be the case, several of which we address below.

Safety Concerns when Caring for a Dementia Patient

Safety is the primary concern when caring fora parent with dementia at home. Often memory lapses become the source of safety concerns. They may forget to turn off a stove. Or might light a candle and leave it unattended. They may even leave the house and walk aimlessly around the neighborhood. And without supervision or assistance, this can put your loved one at risk.

Unless you’re able to supervise your loved ones all day long, when this stage of dementia happens, it’s best to seek alternative options for care services.

Medication Compliance

Medications are an important consideration, especially when people are getting older. Again, memory lapses can be the cause of problems. Forgetting to take medication or taking it twice can lead to illness and more severe consequences – stroke, heart attack, etc.

Caring for parent with dementia at home means monitoring what medications need to be taken and when.And if caring for a dementia patient is not within your abilities or you are not able to make that large commitment, then it’s best not to try caring for your own parent with dementia at home. It’s better to have them in a living situation with a trained professional that will help them with their prescriptions.

Unkempt Appearance and Home

applying makeup is caring for parent with dementia at home

While this may not appear as much of as threat as the reasons above, it is still highly important. When a parent with dementia at home is unable to keep themselves and their environment clean, issues can occur that can put their health at risk. Good hygiene and maintaining a clean home may be even more important that in past as the parent grows older. As appearance begin to decline it is often a sign that additional help may be necessary.

While this may not be needed on a daily basis, if someone can visit your loved one to help them with daily living skills every other day or at least three times a week, that would be best. If this is not possible, assisted living communities may be a great option.

When Caring for a Parent with Dementia at Home is no longer possible

One of the most common feelings people have caring for a dementia patient is guilt. When it comes seeking elderly care, it’s also common to feel as though you are letting them down, or giving up on them. This guilt is not warranted, though.

caring for a dementia patient means involving her in normal activitiesYou have been caring for your parent with dementia at home up to this point, and now, it’s no longer feasible for you to continue. This does not make you a bad person or inadequate. It simply means your loved one’s needs have exceeded your ability to help him/her enough. Often, because of feelings of guilt, people try to care for parents with dementia at home long beyond what they really can handle. You actually could be doing the wrong thing continuing to try and then putting your older loved one at increased risk, or at the very least providing a less compatible environment that what they really need.

Making the Decision to Seek Elder Care

Reach out to Eldercare Connections for help with this situation. We help you find the right type of support for your loved one’s needs. Whether you need senior placement services or elderly home care our specialists will help you determine the perfect fit for your loved one. We work with people every single day and help them in many ways for no cost at all.

You have nothing to lose so just call us and ask for information. We know it’s a hard time, and we want to make it easier for you. Reach out to us by completing our contact us form, or you can reach us at (513) 685-8998.

Changing Your Perspective to Deal with the Guilt of Seeking Elderly Care

One of the first feelings people have when they seek elderly care services is guilt. Many reasons for this guilt exist, and they are completely warranted. However, it’s important to understand that guilt isn’t a reason to not seek elderly care for your older loved one.

Dealing with the Guilt

elderly care decisions for grandparents couple on a family farmThe root of the guilt you feel is from love you have for this person. You don’t want them to feel as though you do not love or care for them because you are not the one providing the help they need.

You may think, “Well, actions speak louder than words.” This is true, but providing the services isn’t the only action that will show how much you love and care for that person. Seeking services is also an action and often is the best course of action.

This is why the first way to deal with the guilt is by looking at seeking elderly care differently.

Change Your Perspective

When a mother has a baby and works outside of the home, child care services are often used to help. Elderly care services is the same thing. Not seeking help could be neglectful, which actually would show you don’t love or care for your older loved one.

Perspective can make situations much easier to handle. You may need to remind yourself constantly until you believe it.

Another perspective to consider is reminding yourself that this isn’t the only thing your older loved one is receiving. Just because elderly care services are being used, it doesn’t mean you aren’t going to spend time with them and help them in other ways.

Providing assistance outside of services is one way you can help yourself see that you are providing MORE than what your loved one needs. This can make you and your loved one much happier.

happy senior woman enjoying quality elderly careChanging your perspective isn’t the only way to deal with your guilt. Changing the perspective of your older loved one will help you as well. When your loved one feels good about elderly care services, you will too.

Some ways to help your older loved one see that these services are good for him or her is to point out what would happen if they were not available. Certainly that would be a challenging conversation and unpleasant considerations may arise. But this may open your loved one’s eyes and mind, which can be a great relief for you.

You may also be able to put things in a better light by explaining that just like they may have elicited services for you growing up, you are now doing the same. This may help him or her see this is a necessary thing to do since you have other obligations.

Eldercare Connections for Elderly Care Help

Eldercare Connections offers senior placement services to help people going through the feelings you’re having right now. We can help you get through this difficult time with suggestions on how to deal with the situation, as well as provide referrals for services. Sometimes, learning more about the services can help you understand this isn’t a lack of love, but actually an act of love.