Advice on Preparing Your Home for a Loved One With Alzheimer's
Today we have a guest article from Lydia Chan, who is a friend of Holistically Devoted Assisted Living (HDAL) and the caregivers community. Enjoy.
You may have suspected the diagnosis, but actually learning your loved one has Alzheimer's can be very intimidating. There is going to be a good deal of change coming, but you aren't in this alone. From getting a caregiver to remodeling your home, here is advice on how to help you prepare your life and home to best take care of your loved one.
Finding a Caregiver
Early-stage Alzheimer's may be manageable, but as your loved one's condition worsens, you may find yourself in need of some support at home. You may be working, and your loved one is going to need help and companionship. Finding a good caregiver may be a step you wish to take, and there are many financial options available to aid you in doing so. Caregivers can help you with practical things, like bathing and getting loved ones to take their medication on time, but they also offer companionship, so your family member doesn't suffer from loneliness.
Balance may become an issue for seniors, and they may begin to wander about. To keep them safe and to relieve any agitation they may experience, it will be best to reorganize your home. It may be beneficial to install handrails where they will need extra support, like along stairways and in the bathroom. Make sure carpeting is well secured and visible and remove rugs that may pose a problem for shuffling feet. Also, keep plugs and cables out of walkways, again, to prevent tripping.
Proper Safety Devices
It's going to be more important than ever to make sure your home safety equipment is up to date and that you know how to use it. Carbon monoxide detectors, smoke alarms, and even fire extinguishers are all going to be vital to your home to keep your loved one safe. It will be prudent to get a good first aid kit as well to help deal with any accidents that may happen. You can buy one pre-made or assemble one yourself. Bandages, Band-Aids, gloves, safety pins, gauze, and emergency medication, including painkillers, antihistamines, and skin creams are all items you can include in such a kit.
Remodeling the Home
An unfortunate reality is that your home is going to need a lot of work to be the best place possible for your loved one. Some things may be simpler than others, such as motion sensor lights. There are many things you need to think of before beginning the process of a remodel. How accessible is the kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom? Is it feasible to simply lock your senior out of the kitchen by installing locks and deadbolts, or should you budget for a complete overhaul? The average cost to remodel a kitchen is $19,589, but don't let that number deter you if your kitchen would otherwise be dangerous for your loved one. There are programs to help you finance the modifications your home needs to be a safe haven for your loved one.
This journey that you are on with your loved one is going to be difficult, but if you get the support you need, it can be a rewarding experience to keep loved ones at home. Not only will they have the surety of someone who loves them looking after them, but they will have familiar objects and people to help them trigger their memory and reassure them. There are many steps you need to take to get your house ready, but it is possible, and there is help out there for you. Remember, you're not alone.
Image courtesy of Pixabay.
At the onset of an Alzheimer's diagnosis, we at HDAL obviously would recommend assisted living as a form of care for your loved one. However, in many cases, the affected person and/or their family may want them to remain in the home. In that event, it's important to understand how to make the home a safe setting. We want to thank Lydia for sharing information on how to accomplish this. Lydia is the co-creator of Alzheimerscaregiver.net, which provides tips and resources to help caregivers. Please check out her website for more information on how to properly care for the aging community.
The Owners of Holistically Devoted Assisted Living Facility
Holistically Devoted Assisted Living Facility (HDAL) is the premier assisted living facility in Prince George's County, Maryland. At HDAL, we deliver holistic health care to our residents - by meeting all their personal needs while allowing them the dignity of being freethinking and independent adults; and we provide devoted service - by being ever-present as servants in the lives of our residents as we assist them with performing their activities of daily living.