If your older family member has recently been diagnosed with dementia, they may still be quite capable of caring for themselves most of the time. However, they are likely experiencing memory problems that can make day-to-day living difficult. While it’s important that you keep an eye on the senior’s symptoms, watching for changes that warrant a change in their care, you can also help them to remain as independent as possible using the tips below.
Write Down Important Information
One of the easiest ways to help your older family member to remember important information, like appointments, names, and other things, is to have them write the information down. They can either carry a small notebook and pen with them or, if they are more tech-savvy, use a smartphone to record the information.
When your aging relative has trouble remembering where things in the house are, using labels can help. Try putting labels on cupboard and closet doors that indicate what is in them. As dementia worsens, you may need to switch from written labels to pictures of what is in the cupboard or closet.
Use a Whiteboard
Place a whiteboard on the wall where the senior can write daily notes and reminders. Be sure to put the board in a place where they will see it every day. Some things it can be useful to write down is the day of the week, the date, and any special things that are happening that day, including appointments or expected visits.
If your aging relative uses a smartphone or tablet, use it to set reminders. Reminders can be used to ensure the senior takes their medication, goes to appointments, or even remembers to have lunch.
Arrange for Phone Calls
You might also arrange for a friend or family member to call the senior. Phone calls can be used to remind the older adult to take medicine or expect someone to pick them up for an appointment. In addition, a phone call is a great way to check in on the seniors and make certain they are okay each day.
When it is time for your aging relative to receive additional care, elder care can help. In fact, involving elder care early on can be beneficial in that it gives elder care providers and the older adult a chance to form a relationship before the disease worsens. It also allows the elder care time to learn the senior’s likes and wishes before they are unable to communicate them for themselves. Having an elder care provider assisting the older adult can also be helpful to family caregivers since they’ll know their loved one is safe.