Staying at home as a person ages is very important to most people. Their home is a representation of their financial and personal accomplishments. And it’s a reminder of the happy times they had raising their children and spending time with their grandchildren.
When someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, though, many people think the only option for them is to be taken to a care facility that specializes in Alzheimer’s care.
It is possible to keep your loved one at home as long as you provide adequate home health care. One of the best ways to do this is to prepare your home (or theirs) for the Alzheimer’s patient.
Preparing Home Care Now: Prepare Your Home for a Loved One with Alzheimer’s
Once your loved one has Alzheimer’s disease, their surroundings need to be familiar. Even if they’re staying in their own home, disorganization can result in confusion and anxiety. So, whether your loved one will be staying with you or in their own home with specialized home care, it’s vital to prepare the home.
Here are four ways you can prepare your home for your loved one with Alzheimer’s.
1. Make Your Home as Safe as Possible
Safety should be the number one priority. Seniors are more prone to losing their balance and falling than other age groups. When there’s clutter on the ground or clutter on the countertops that could accidentally fall to the ground, there’s a higher likelihood of an accident.
We recommend walking around the whole house with a clipboard or notebook, taking note of all areas of concern.
For instance, in the bedroom it’s probably best to avoid free-standing electric heaters and even electric blankets. When an Alzheimer’s patient is confused, they might not think to turn off one of these devices. The result could be burns or even a fire.
Remove harmful chemicals from their bathroom and keep medications out of reach. Make sure, too, to cover unused electrical sockets. It might be prudent to start utilizing child-proof locks on cabinets to protect your loved one from medications, chemicals, or items (like kitchen knives) that could do them harm. Also, clear all walking paths as you don’t want them to trip and require dental help.
2. Focus on Simplicity and Functionality
Clutter is not only dangerous – it can be confusing to your loved one. In their room especially, the décor should be simple. Most of it should be functional, making your life and theirs much easier.
This isn’t to say, however, that their room has to become sterile like a hospital. There can still be pretty knick-knacks and pictures of family members. Just make sure there aren’t so many that they could get confused or hurt.
3. Labels Help a Lot
Looking at an object may be confusing for your loved one, but having a label on it might bring back to mind what the item is and what it’s used for. You can put labels on everything from each room in the house, to several items in the home.
4. Set Boundaries
Some things just need to stay off limits. The garage and laundry room are good ones to put on the “out of bounds” list. Certain drawers, cupboards, the swimming pool, and stairs are other areas that the Alzheimer’s patient should have limited access to – at most.
Get All the Help You Need with Home Care Agencies
One of the best ways you can help your loved one with Alzheimer’s is by getting help from one of the many home care agencies providing optimal home care, even for those with dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Choosing a home care agency with qualified senior helpers is one more thing you can do to help your loved one stay happy, calm, and healthy during their senior years.
Skylark Senior Care will happily assist you and your loved one with all of their home care needs. A skilled home caregiver will come in regularly to help with general home care needs, as well as the patient’s overall health and wellness needs.
Do you need help taking care of your love ones? Call us today to find out more about our services and how we can help you care for those you love.