Coping with an Alzheimer’s Diagnosis
Finding out that you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s can be difficult to process. The idea of losing your memory to the point where those closest to you become unrecognizable is scary, and it’s easy to become overwhelmed when thinking of what’s to come. However, it’s important to try and stay grounded so you can make plans for your future and still enjoy your present. Below are some tips on how you can cope with this diagnosis and move forward.
The best place to start once you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is research. While it’s universally known that this disease affects memory and behavior, it’s a lot more complex than that, which is why you need to learn as much about it as possible. Not only will this help to prepare you for what’s to come, but it could also provide some peace of mind. Understanding Alzheimer’s properly will help you to cope, and there are plenty of online resources to look at as well as asking your doctor for information.
There are various forms of care Alzheimer patients can access that you might find useful at different stages. You can have a specialist nurse visit you at home to check-in and provide some support, as well as visiting day centers where patients can socialize and engage in activities that might help to soothe them. If the condition worsens, you might want to consider live-in memory care at facilities that have been designed specifically for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.
Another thing you will need to look into is adapting your living space to accommodate the condition. You might want to leave notes around the house to serve as reminders for days where you might feel confused, and getting into a good daily routine will also be helpful. Better lighting in the home has also been found useful for Alzheimer patients and takes care to reduce any tripping hazards or other potential dangers around the house. Setting alarms or reminders on your phone might also be useful tools.
Talk About It
Getting diagnosed with Alzheimer’s can be worrying and stressful; some people might even find they start experiencing depression as a result. It’s important to talk about how you’re feeling about your diagnosis with loved ones for support and to relieve yourself of some of the anxiety and stress you might be feeling. You could also consider talking to a professional counselor if this is something you might be more comfortable with.
An Alzheimer’s diagnosis will be overwhelming and naturally cause concern about the future, but it’s important to try and stay positive. It doesn’t mean things will change all at once, and you will still have many good days to look forward to and can live a perfectly happy life. Take each day as it comes and continue to enjoy doing the things you love, and surround yourself with your friends and family.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, use these tips to help you adjust to this news and continue to live a happy, healthy lifestyle.