Alzheimer’s disease, Relatively unknown 50 years ago, is now a mainstream concern.
Consider these harrowing statistics according to Alzheimer’s Association:
- 1 in 9 Americans over 65 has Alzheimer’s disease.
- One-third of Americans over age 85 are afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease.
- Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.
- 1 in 3 seniors die with Alzheimer’s disease or other kind of dementia.
- By 2050, there could be as many as 7 million people over 85 years of age with Alzheimer’s.
And who is caring for all these people with Alzheimer’s disease (accounting for 60-70% of dementia) or other types of dementia?
In many cases, friends and family are the ones providing Alzheimer’s and dementia care. Overtime, this can take a devastating toll on caregivers. Family First Companion Care offers respite to those caregivers. Located in Evansville, we serve six different counties in southern Indiana.
Challenges of Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care
Caring for people with dementia has special challenges.
You’re dealing with people who have problems with:
- Short-term memory
- Ability to pay attention and focus
- Reasoning and judgment
- Visual perception
Alzheimer’s, the most common type of dementia, affects all facets of daily life of the sufferers, from when they wake up to when they go to bed. They may experience constant bouts of anxiety and depression.
What used to be tasks that came naturally might present insurmountable challenges. Through different stages of the disease, the degree of required care only increases.
Primary caregivers tend to be family members, who are worried about maintaining their own health. This is especially worrisome if the caregivers are spouses, who are likely elderly themselves.
Dementia and Alzheimer’s care require working closely with physicians, family members, and caregivers. Creating a customized care that considers the patient’s’ needs, abilities, and interests results in patients being more engaged and calmer.
Still, unforeseen behavior and circumstances can stress out both the patients and caregivers. Balancing Alzheimer’s care and the caregiver’s’ own needs is likely to be an ongoing challenge throughout the life of the disease.
How can Family First Companion Care help?
Family First Companion Care has highly trained nurses and companions who can assist with essential daily tasks. These include bathing, dressing, toileting, and other personal hygiene needs.
On the other hand, if the primary caregiver still wants to do these tasks but need a helping hand in some other area, we can assist with meal preparation and clean up, shopping, and household maintenance such as cleaning, vacuuming, and laundry.
We can also help with monitoring medications and transportation to doctor’s appointments. This way, the primary caregiver doesn’t need to be burdened and feel like he or she needs to do everything. We feel that caregivers need caregiving too and they need to be mindful of their own physical, mental, and emotional health.
Because each stage of Alzheimer’s or other dementia-related conditions is different, we work with each client to provide a tailored care that best maintains a dignified standard of living.