Promoting Independence for Seniors with Alzheimer’s

How to Promote Independence When Providing Alzheimer’s Care

By Will Reid, 9:00 am on

It is commonplace for seniors with Alzheimer’s to feel sad, frustrated, or even angry when even the simplest tasks become difficult for them to complete on their own. Caregivers in Cincinnati with the best of intentions often want to take over in order to simplify life and provide their loved one with a safe environment, but it is always important to remember to respect your senior loved one’s independence and provide a sense of self-worth. Here are some ways that can be accomplished.

Break Down Each Task

For the senior with Alzheimer’s, many everyday tasks seem complex. Before stepping in to help, break things down into individual, easier-to-manage steps. Give your loved one space to accomplish the task on his or her own, but provide instructions to simplify tasks and promote independence if needed.

Take Your Time

Seniors with Alzheimer’s often need more time to complete simple tasks. Remain aware of this, and provide your loved one with the time he or she needs while offering encouraging words each step of the way. Avoid rushing your loved one, which can lead to frustration or outbursts.

Find the Best Time of Day

Whether it’s you or a professional caregiver, whoever provides in-home Alzheimer’s care for you loved one should make note of the time when his or her memory peaks and physical dexterity seems to be at its best. This is often the best time of day for bathing, brushing teeth, preparing meals, or completing any other essential tasks. Whenever possible, adjust your schedule to enhance opportunities for independence.

Avoid Treating Your Loved One Like a Child

Because Alzheimer’s is progressive, seniors will eventually display more childlike behaviors, and many caregivers follow the cue and begin to treat the senior as a child. Rather than doing this, engage your loved one in regular conversation and solicit opinions and input to help him or her feel empowered, respected, and valued.

Taking these steps stimulates the brain, encourages independence, and empowers seniors, making for a more successful relationship between caregiver and care recipient. Find the right support and resources for you and your loved one through Home Care Assistance. As a leading provider of elder care Cincinnati families trust, we can ensure your loved one has the help necessary to remain safe and comfortable in his or her home. Give us a call at 513.891.2273 and speak with a dedicated Care Manager today.