As cold and flu season comes around most family caregivers are thinking of ways that they can protect their elderly loved ones from illness and infection, and guard them against the potentially devastating consequences of such issues. This is particularly important if you are a family caregiver for a senior who is in the later stage of Alzheimer’s disease.
While all seniors tend to be more vulnerable to illness and infection due to lower immune systems, seniors who are at this stage of dementia have lower mobility, tend to eat less and a less healthy diet, and are more fragile, adding up to greater vulnerability and a higher risk of serious consequences.
Use these tips to protect your senior with advanced Alzheimer’s disease from serious illness and infection:
-Discourage visits from anyone who has recently been ill, thinks that they might be ill, or has been caring for someone who is ill
-Wash your hands regularly throughout the day and encourage your parent to wash their hands as well
-Provide hand sanitizing gel to all visitors and insist that they use it prior to interacting with your parent
-Utilize respite care if you are feeling under the weather or are in the home with a child or partner who is sick
-Encourage your parent to stay properly hydrated and to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet
-Make sure that your parent keeps up with brushing and flossing, or properly caring for their dentures to control bacteria in the mouth
-Ensure that their home is kept at a comfortable temperature, but that it is not too warm as this can harbor bacteria
-If your parent uses a humidifier, ensure that you only use distilled water and that you clean the machine regularly to remove bacteria
-Avoid bringing your parent out in public too frequently and utilize hand sanitizing gel and surface sanitizers when you do
How can home care services help?
Starting elder care for your parent can be an exceptional way for you to ensure that your senior is getting everything that they need to maintain their quality of life as they age in place. The highly personalized services of an elderly home care services provider are tailored to your parent as an individual.
This means that they will specifically address your parent’s challenges, needs, and limitations while encouraging them to live a lifestyle that is as active, independent, and fulfilling as possible as they age in place. These services can include anything from safe and reliable transportation that allows your parent to go where they want and need to when they want and need to rather than waiting for you to assist in fulfilling activities of daily living to companionship to boost mental and emotional health. As their family caregiver, this can give you peace of mind and reassurance that your senior is in good hands even when you are not able to be with them.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring home care services in Wasilla, AK, call us! The friendly staff at Shine Bright Care are here to answer your questions.
Call toll-free – (888) 264-5998
In reflecting on this journey, my home care career, I cannot help but think of my parents. I assisted alongside my sister, to care for them during their last years. Both mother and father had suffered a stroke, heart attacks, diabetes, dementia, hypertension and many more complications that I cannot even imagine going through.
Life as a caregiver was not easy but it was something that you just had to do, especially for your parents. Both my parents needed full-time 24-7 care, meaning they could not do anything for themselves. Every day my sister would care for them, whether it was assisting them to medical appointments, cooking and cleaning, bathing and showering, or transferring from wheelchair to bed. It was their complete care for all activities of daily living.
I think of my parents often. My father passed in 2012 and my mother recently passed in 2015. I would give anything to have them back. That would be selfish to say, as it would have meant them suffering and not living a full life. I know they are in heaven smiling down.
With the experience of caring for my parents, I was able to secure a job as a direct support professional. I was later offered a job as a case manager and excelled to become a team leader. Gradually I was promoted to being a care coordinator and from then on, I just knew this was meant for me.
This is my calling; this is my life’s purpose. I went on to experience greater things in this field of Human Services. To care and help individuals and families find support and services needed to navigate the system to meet their needs, is such an honor and rewarding experience to be involved in.
I look back, and a decade has passed since I started and it is now 2017. I would love to thank my parents for giving me the opportunity to have the experience of caring for them and go on to do something great with helping others find care and support in the community.
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