When a loved begins to exhibit signs of memory loss by asking the same question repeatedly, forgetting appointments, or how to get to a home they have lived in for years, it can be exceedingly stressful for both the loved one and his or her family members. Are you experiencing this with a loved one? Let us discuss some tips to help.
While it can be difficult to witness the memory decline of a loved one, and your own fear of what you are witnessing may cause you to become frustrated with your loved one, it can be important to understand he or she may be acutely aware they are experiencing memory loss. It can be both a frightening and embarrassing time for him or her. The best thing you can do may be to implement strategies to preserve his or her dignity. When he or she repeatedly asks you the same question, take a deep breath and exercise patience. Internally remind yourself that your goal may not be to cure his or her memory problems, but to make sure he or she feels secure, and that will assist you with maintaining your cool. Utilize steps for his or her safety, such as getting a plastic pill dispenser or an electronic pill dispenser to assure medication administration safety; call frequently to check in and subtly remind him or her of any upcoming appointments; and consider speaking to other close friends and family members, so they can also participate in kindly assuring the well-being of your loved one.
One of the biggest reported fears surrounding memory loss in older people may be the loss of control. The best dignity preserving technique to assist a loved one may be allowing him or her to have a voice in determining both a plan of care for when memory problems worsen, as well as, end of life estate planning. Due to the fact that a person must have legal mental capacity to create estate planning documents, including documents that will provide for long-term care, one of the greatest gifts you can give your loved one may be to assist him or her in meeting with an estate planning attorney to get affairs in order before memory declines further.
While watching a loved one suffer memory loss can feel overwhelming and helpless, taking it step-by-step with a plan of action that supports the goal of dignity for your family member can be a smart and loving approach. For more information about how to help your loved one as he or she struggles with memory loss, please reach out to our office to schedule an appointment. We do telephone, computer, and face-to-face appointments. Our face-to-face appointments are held outside in the open air (frequently selected by clients for document signing) and inside our office conference room. We follow all CDC guidelines. Our office procedures and COVID-19 safety protocols are designed and enhanced by medical review and air quality engineering and design.