Home > Alzheimer's Disease, Dementia & Brain Health > The Family Caregiver : You Have To Love Me Too

The Family Caregiver : You Have To Love Me Too

The symptoms of dementia do not appear overnight. The signs arrive with subtlety and inconsistency and then somewhere along the way, family members of an elderly person with declining mental and physical health decide that intervention is necessary. In the beginning, it’s frequently an adult child who becomes the caregiver assisting their parent with instrumental activities of daily living such as taking them to doctor’s appointments, setting up medication regiments, shopping , cooking, laundry, and handling household finances.

Caring for an individual with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia is challenging, time consuming, and can be emotionally and physically overwhelming. If you think of a family caregiver as having their own set of daily activities, chores and routines, not to mention leisure time, and imagine how they must feel having to add hours of time everyday providing assistance, then you are able to understand why they may feel overwhelmed. As the decline progresses, assistance with core personal activities of daily life are needed and include activities such as bathing, dressing, grooming, toileting, eating, and general safety.

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Many times this need for more extensive care and assistance prompts families to employ the services of a paid caregiver. Paid caregivers experience many of the same issues faced by family caregivers; they feel sadness and empathy, frustration and responsibility, and because of their “paid employee status,” they have to develop good organizational and time management skills. Some patients suffering with a form of dementia develop abusive behaviors by using a harsh tone of voice, insulting, swearing, screaming, or yelling at the caregiver, accusing them of neglecting or abandoning them, butting in, threatening the use of physical force, or threatening to leave. They are often unaware of the help they need and are reluctant to accept it, and frequently act in ways they would not have done previously.

Being a caregiver of a person with dementia, whether you are paid for your services or you are a family member, is a very, very difficult undertaking. I recently spoke with Jessica Crawford, Intake Coordinator at Tender Loving Care Hospice in Moorpark, CA and she provided me with a poignant insight into the plight of family member as caregiver. She said that along with all of the other challenges they face, they have the added pledge of “loving the patient” as well.

800Seniors.com is a leading referral system in the Elderly Healthcare industry. We are located on 5400 Atlantis Court, Moorpark, California 93021. 800Seniors.com provides the perfect match between seniors searching for health care provisions such as Home Care, Home Health, Skilled Nursing, Hospice Care, Medical Supplies, as well as a variety of Assisted Living Los Angeles and Care Homes nationwide. Take the confusion and hassle out of the search. For more information call 1-800-768-8221, visit http://800seniors.com or fax us your details at (805)517-1623.

About The Author: Gloria Ha’o Schneider is an expert in senior citizen and baby boomer issues. Her topics revolve around Senior Living and Healthcare to provide the latest information to this demographic as well as their families and loved ones.

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