Keeping Holidays Happy When a Loved One Has Alzheimer's11/24/13
SUNDAY, Nov. 24, 2013 (HealthDay News) -- The holidays can be a
difficult time when a loved one has Alzheimer's disease, but there
are ways to keep the season happy and memorable, an expert
"Making some minor adjustments to your family traditions, caregivers and their loved ones are still able to make the most of their holiday," Rebecca Axline, a supervisory clinical social worker at Houston Methodist Hospital's Nantz National Alzheimer Center, said in a hospital news release.
She offered the following suggestions:
- Keep your family member as involved as possible. For example,
open cards together, discuss gift selections or give them simple
baking tasks. Try to focus on the moment rather than results.
- Be consistent with medications and doctors' recommendations.
Maintaining the structure of medications, treatments and day
programs will be better for both you and your loved one.
- Make sure living spaces are safe. For example, lighted candles
may be hazardous and large blinking lights can cause
- Minimize overstimulation and your own anxiety, as this can
transfer to your loved one. Keep activities simple, and alert your
guests ahead of time about what's needed. Reduce the number of
visitors, simplify plans and allow a few days before and after an
event to be quiet and relaxing.
- Look after yourself. Make a list of the usual things you do
during the holidays and decide which ones you want to keep and
which ones you can skip. Let others help you and be clear about
what you need them to do. Include time away for yourself and things
that help you restore your energy.
The Alzheimer's Association has more about
holidays and Alzheimer's families.
Copyright © 2013
. All rights reserved.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.