When a person is diagnosed with dementia, it’s frequent to see them forget about daily tasks and how to do them altogether – even in the early stages of the disease. During the early stage, they will probably know how to do things and may eventually remember how to do them. However, later on, as the condition worsens, it’s likely that they will be rendered unable to care for themselves independently.
Despite the degenerative nature of dementia, there are some ways you can help someone living with the condition. You can assist them with their daily tasks so that they can enjoy a quality of life, safety, and independent living for as long as possible. Want to know how you can help a loved one suffering from this ailment? Then keep on reading.
Labeling cupboards, drawers, keys, and many other household items can help a dementia patient so much with their daily tasks.
For example, if they remember they need to clean a particular part of the house but can’t figure out which one, it can be very confusing and frustrating – but labeling could eliminate this obstruction and let them get on with whatever it is they need to do.
You can also label photographs or any other keepsakes and memories they have around the house – doing so will hopefully keep their family and friends in mind.
Ensure a Safe Home
As daily tasks get more confusing and difficult for a dementia sufferer, they can become more prone to accidents, like falls. To help prevent incidents, you should help them maintain a clean, tidy home free of clutter and dangerous obstacles, such as cables, small tables, ornaments, and rugs that can be tripped over.
It would also help if you considered adding locks to cupboards that contain potentially harmful items, such as matches, cigarette lighters, drugs, and alcohol. The drug cupboard is an especially important one to monitor; if your loved one takes medication, they might accidentally take the wrong amount or forget to take it at all in the midst of their confusion.
Make a To-Do List
Make a simple to-do list of things they should do every day and make sure they tick them off so they know their tasks have been completed. A list could include simple daily acts, such as brushing their teeth, bathing, having three meals a day, and taking out the trash.
Any kind of simple chore or task can be noted down and checked off – not only will it help them throughout their daily lives, but it will also hopefully get them moving a bit more, keeping them fit and active in the process.
Consider Professional Care
If you don’t have the time to pop in and see your loved one every day and help them with their housework, you can also hire professional carers who will visit them anything from once to several times per day.
These are dementia caregiver support workers who are specially trained and qualified. They typically help dementia patients, the elderly, and anybody with disabilities with all manners of daily tasks, such as cooking, cleaning, and grocery shopping – they even come just to enjoy a cup of tea and chit chat sometimes so that your loved one gets their much-needed daily dose of social interaction.
Keep in Regular Contact
Of course, not every dementia patient needs professional care right away – and that’s okay. Instead, a little help and social interaction with family and friends can go a long way, especially in the early stages of the condition when they are still able to live independently.
With this in mind, communication is important. Just a simple phone call every day can help your loved one stay on track with their daily tasks – even better; you can stay on the phone with them whilst they complete a certain activity.
Another great idea to help with proper communication is to invest in a wireless phone or a smartphone with video call capabilities, so you can chat with your loved one while they do daily tasks at the same time – like laundry or dusting their house for example. This kind of modern communication could take some getting used to but would benefit both them and you in knowing they have fulfilled a daily chore – it should also hopefully make you proud of them, too!