Every Sunday, an 87 year old Alzheimer’s client finds herself back in her prime. Up on the stage of a small brick chapel sequestered among the green oaks and pines of the American countryside, she sings with the choir. Up on the stage, her disease is vanquished.
There is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s—the most prevalent form of dementia in the world—but people who care for those with the illness have found temporary cures:
“The things that are pleasurable in their minds and things they have mastered in the past can bring them back…when she sings, she comes back to her old self,” states her choir director, Luke Hildebrand. It’s an observation I witnessed first hand with my own grandmother; and one Luke has made not only in his choir but also with his best friend.
Family caregivers are often the first to discover this temporary relief from the throws of Alzheimer’s, but are often unable to provide as much of it as they’d like. Let’s face it, it’s not always easy to find time in between work schedules, children, and other family priorities to take a senior with Alzheimer’s back to a place or activity that they’ve mastered.
Maybe it’s a choir room, maybe it’s a fishing hole or an art studio—wherever their “happy place” is, one of Preferred Care at Home’s compassionate caregivers can take them there and let them enjoy a lifelong hobby.
In the struggle against Alzheimer’s, it can be easy to give up. It can be easy to accept the inevitable decline of a loved one’s personality: but you don’t have to. In fact, maintaining a positive attitude for yourself can go a long way towards helping those with the disease. A recent study by the University of California-San Francisco concluded that Alzheimer’s and dementia patients have an increased sense of emotional awareness even as their other cognitive abilities degenerate. In other words, they are able to feel and emulate positive emotions around them.
Improving quality of life for someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia is closely tied to being able to share those positive and compassionate emotions, places, and activities with them. In light of this, having a trained caregiver like the ones Preferred Care at Home provides can be an invaluable asset. A compassionate caregiver can not only assist with many of a senior’s hygienic and physical needs, but can also provide companionship and transportation to the places they love.
A caregiver can help you fight the battle against Alzheimer’s full-time.
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