It's a big challenge when your parent develops Alzheimers disease. It can lead to some big changes in their habits and in your routines as well. Here are three ways that you can help your parent to cope with their Alzheimers disease:
Develop structure and routines
As your parent's memory starts to deteriorate, one of the best ways to help them is to develop routines that they can depend on. Because Alzheimers attacks different memories at different times, it can be hard to determine what routines will be the most effective. One of the best ways to build routines is to find things that your parent has been doing for an extremely long time. Keep them in recognizable locations so that their mind has a greater potential of accessing a memory that will keep them comfortable and relaxed.
Be understanding and caring
Your parent will get frustrated easily because they know that they shouldn't have forgotten a memory. They still feel the same emotions and have concerns that they've always had, but now they feel powerless. This powerlessness can cause them to lash out, which can make things worse for them. Develop coping strategies for them and show them understanding. Try to feel how they feel so that you can empathize with their situation. This won't solve the underlying issue of dementia, but it will help to make them feel comfortable and calm them down.
Send them to an Alzheimers care facility
There will come a time when your parent is no longer able to function properly in their own home. The most obvious sign of this is when they disappear or injure themselves with something at home. When this time comes, look at facilities that can help your parent. These facilities have round-the-clock staff and locked doors so that your parent won't injure themselves as they wander.
When they are at the facility, one of the best things that you can do for your parent is to regularly visit. When you are there, they will see a face that they have seen for decades and this will help their general emotional state. Keep things in their room that are touchstones from their past life. Limit these things to major remembrances like military decorations, family photos, and equipment from one of their favorite hobbies.
As you do these things, you won't be able to stop the progression of Alzheimers, but you will be able to help your parent and your family navigate the difficult progression of this disease more smoothly.