Agitation is among the more challenging effects for people with Alzheimer’s, and it can also be extremely frustrating for family members to manage. One of the keys is in taking steps to address agitation before it’s felt and conveyed by the senior loved one, which involves keeping an eye on what has caused these feelings in the past, and creating a home environment in which those stimulants are eliminated or reduced. These tips can help:
- Designate a place of retreat. When life starts to become stressful, having a specially created place for a senior loved one to go to de-stress often works wonders in restoring peace. This could be a specific room, or perhaps a comfortable corner with soothing activities readily available, quiet music, a calming scent to enjoy such as lavender or vanilla – whatever supplies peace and relaxation for the senior.
- Assess the home for distressing objects. Focus on what your family member with Alzheimer’s disease is easily agitated by, such as certain decorations, mirrors (which may give the illusion of someone else watching), window coverings that may not sufficiently block out the darkening evening sky (prompting sundowning issues), etc.
- Minimize noise and other distractions. Soft carpeting is often more comforting for those with dementia than harder floor materials, which may reverberate or accentuate the noise of footsteps. Keep the TV or radio at a reasonable volume, and set to a station that offers gentle music instead of alarming, graphic news shows. Close windows if outside noises seem to cause irritation.
- Adjust lighting. Ensure that each room the individual may enter is well lit, with natural light as much as possible or higher wattage lightbulbs, carefully adjusting to eliminate any unusual shapes or shadows created by the light.
- Keep frequently used items readily accessible. Whatever the senior has a tendency to want to make use of or hold frequently ought to be put into a visible location where he or she can find it quickly. Attaching labels with words or pictures of what the senior may want to find in cabinets or the refrigerator can be an excellent way to help bypass irritation.
Let Home Sweet Home In-Home Care’s experienced dementia caregivers help maintain the most calming and peaceful environment for an older adult you love, and provide the skilled, creative, compassionate care that makes life the best it can be. Some of the countless ways we can improve life for individuals with dementia include:
- Specially created activities centered on a senior’s specific interests and abilities
- Companionship in order to help seniors stay socially engaged
- Evening respite care to allow family caregivers the opportunity for a restful night when a senior is challenged by sundowning
- And so much more
Call us at (269) 849-9252 to request an in-home consultation and also to learn more about our outstanding St. Joseph, MI senior care services! For a full list of all of the communities we serve throughout Michigan, please visit our Service Area page. Or feel free to contact us at our other locations, (269) 763-5350 in Paw Paw, (269) 373-5444 in Kalamazoo or (269) 963-9888 in Battle Creek.