December 2017 Alzheimer Care during the Holidays
The holiday season can be stressful, doubly so when you are a caregiver for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease. It’s important, however, to not let the stresses of Alzheimer care interfere with your holiday joy. While maintaining family traditions as they have always been for as long as possible can help bring the holidays alive, sometimes it is not feasible for someone with Alzheimer’s. To find your way within the new family dynamic as a caregiver, adjust your traditions and holiday festivities to fit the needs of your loved ones.
It’s all right to want to preserve the traditions that make the holidays the holidays to you and your family. But Alzheimer care might require you to adapt to your new situation. Activities that you might have enjoyed in years past—perhaps caroling, going out to dinner, or even traveling across the country—probably no longer fit the needs of your lifestyle. But you don’t have to toss the entire tradition out the window. Instead, try adjusting your traditions to make things more manageable. Try getting the family together for dinner and put sing carols right in your living room. If you usually travel for the holidays, try to recreate your favorite destinations by putting on a themed party. After all, family holiday traditions aren’t about what you do. They’re about spending time with family.
If a family get together is part of your tradition, try to plan as much as possible in advance, perhaps even months ahead of the date. Even activities such as grocery shopping can be too much to handle, for both you and your loved one, but luckily, you can get much of what you need delivered by ordering online. As you know, Alzheimer care requires nearly undivided attention. Taking your loved one into a busy public place will only put unneeded stress on everyone involved. The same goes for shopping for gifts. Let your loved one order the gifts they want to give online to save time and energy.
The holidays are about spending time with loved ones. One of the best ways to spend that time is to reminisce about all the good memories that your family has made together. Break out the old photo albums and talk about your favorite memories with your family. You can do this with undivided attention or while engaging in some of the activities that your loved one with Alzheimer’s is still able to participate in, such as decorating the tree or helping prepare dinner.
Alzheimer care for aging parents is a lot to handle any time of year. During the holidays it can be especially difficult. If you need help this year, let the sensitive caregivers at Granny Nannies give you some assistance as you become busy with holiday preparations. Call (305) 591-1818 today. We offer a free in-home care consultation.