Wishing my followers and viewers a safe and happy 4th of July. And to my fellow caregivers, I know holidays are neither easy nor what they used to be, but if you can get a quiet a moment to breathe do so. Perhaps if your loved one is able to travel and they’re not sensitive to loud noises, which I know can be the case with those with Alzheimer’s, take them to see your local fireworks. Seeing all of the pretty lights and color may be the distraction they need for how many minutes long the show is and it will capture their attention. If this is not a possibility and your loved one can still focus on TV, have them view the fireworks on TV.
BBQ’s and family/friend get together’s can be a trying time for someone with Alzheimer’s, and if your home is party central for the 4th or if you’re going to someone else’s home, make sure to find a quiet space for your loved one. A place where they can be calm, and as guests arrive have them greet your loved one-one at a time or a few at a time, because too many people greeting them at once will be too overwhelming for them and for you. See if you can get other family members to assist you in watching and talking with your loved one. Even though they may still want/look for you, the familiar person, I know from firsthand experience, it can’t help to try. And when I write familiar, I don’t mean they’ll know exactly who you are, but if you’re the primary caregiver, you’re the face they recognize, recognize as in seeing, not as in knowing.
The Alzheimer’s Association offers tips on the best ways to communicate with someone who has Alzheimer’s. For a holiday, or event that may include more activity and/or people around, remember to keep your environment as calm as you can, be patient, comforting, reassuring and when speaking, it’s important to choose your words carefully.
For a full list of communication tips go here.
Happy 4th everyone!