Marc Levine from San Diego, California reveals a few secrets about caring for someone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Marc Levine from San Diego, California understands Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Marc Levine has been actively involved with the San Diego chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, regularly attends meetings, events and communicates with others caring for loved ones diagnosed with AD. Marc Levine has learned how to be a loving and compassionate caregiver. Many questions occur when dealing with people diagnosed with AD. What will I do after my AD diagnosis? How will my family or spouse treat me? Many people become angry, blaming their forgetfulness on something else (old age, or stress.) Some hide the disease for years. If your loved one has AD, learn as much as you can about the disease. As the disease progresses, activities we perform become challenging to AD patients such as bathing, dressing, eating, going to the bathroom, and falling asleep. It’s not just forgetfulness - hostility, confusion and even hallucinations or delusions can afflict AD patients. You may notice significant changes in their personality, such as fear leaving their home or participating in their favorite activities. Difficult decisions are necessary. Can your loved one continue to drive, make meals, or go for walks alone. Their vision becomes severely impaired, and they can no longer understand complicated things. They may only be able to communicate with body language. Never argue with AD patients. Keep AD patients on a routine to prevent behavior issues. Keep them mentally stimulated (walking, playing games/puzzles, listening to music.) Remember, they are not responsible for their actions, and they love you very much. Seek help, join support groups and stay healthy. Ask for help from friends and family members. Have you tried to communicate with someone with Alzheimer’s disease (AD)? If so, you know how difficult it can be. Learn as much about the disease as possible. The symptoms change as the disease progresses. Adapt to your loved one's level of function and symptomatic behaviors. Their understanding of what you say and ability to make you understand their world can be challenging. Therefore, be sensitive to how you present yourself and give information when talking to them. Below are a few tips to help you communicate better with people with AD:
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Patiently listen and understand that they often repeat themselves; Make sure that the area is well lit; Approach them from the front, identify yourself and call them by their name; Maintain eye contact; Speak slowly, calmly, and never raise your voice; Keep it simple and give one step directions. Avoid loud places; Touch is important, therefore stroke their hands and shoulders; Facial expressions, body language, and voice tone are important; Interact within his/her own frame of reference, even if it has little to do with reality; Don't correct the person's reality, instead ask questions and stay engaged; Creatively redirect the conversation without contradicting or denying their statements; Use words and visuals (photographs) to recall old memories; Avoid correcting them, even if you don’t understand what they are saying; Rephrase your question instead of repeating it; Non-verbal communication is also very important (stay present and attentive to the person with AD); Always treat them with dignity and respect; Don't speak down to them or treat them as a child; Always remain calm and relaxed.
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Marc Levine from San Diego, California reveals a few secrets for caring for Alzheimer's patients