Caring for the elderly at home with dementia can be a challenge. First, there are the usual, expected normal aging changes. Then, there are changes that are not normal, nor are they desirable. Good, basic dementia care encompasses the many physical, emotional, and mental needs that your family member has. These needs become more apparent as the disease progresses. We want to empower you so you feel you can rise up to meet the challenges that providing care will bring you. First, to better understand how to care for someone with increasing needs, it would be helpful to discover what normal aging changes are. Understanding normal changes will help you recognize abnormal ones. The basic foundation of caring for the elderly at home includes activities of daily living. Those basic, normal things that most people do on a routine, frequent basis. You can see here how dementia affects a person’s activities of daily living (also called “ADLs”). Caring for the elderly at home :15 Activities of Daily Living
- Personal Care
These are considered “main” ADLs, because we do these activities everyday. They are the foundational activities that guide how well we can do other things. But, there are other very important activities that you will likely need to assist when caring for the elderly at home at some point as dementia progresses.
- Medication management
- Managing finances
- Using the telephone
Speaking of activities, the person with dementia is not ready for the rocking chair! Just like the rest of us, your loved one needs to engage the mind and the body. This is where structured activities can play a part. And what about dementia and driving? How do you know when it’s time to take away driving privileges?