Lewy Body Dementia (LBD) is a kind of dementia that occurs when Lewy bodies, a kind of protein deposit, develop in parts of the brain that are involved in memory, thinking, and movement. It’s a progressive disease, so the symptoms get worse over time. It causes cognitive symptoms that can fluctuate from one day to the next or may even change during the course of a few hours. Dealing with a disease that can be unpredictable is difficult and frustrating for both the person with LBD and their caregiver. Below are some tips that may help you to care for your aging relative with LBD.
Be Prepared to Educate Others
Although LBD is the second most common form of dementia, right behind Alzheimer’s disease, it’s not a disease that many people know about. Even healthcare workers may not know much about it. As a family caregiver, you are likely to find yourself explaining LBD to others. Learn as much as you can about the disease. There are plenty of Internet resources. The doctor may also be able to provide you with literature and other resources.
Use a Daily Routine
Daily routines help people with dementia to feel more secure because they know what to expect. A routine can also help caregivers to organize their days. In addition to things like meals and exercise, be sure to include time for socializing with others, fun activities, and activities that help the senior to feel like they have purpose.
Take Care of Caregivers
Caregivers often forget about their own health because they become so focused on the health of the person with LBD. They may grab fast food or processed foods that don’t take much time to prepare because they are too busy to prepare meals. Caregivers often neglect regular medical appointments and health screenings. They can also suffer psychological problems because of the emotional impact of being a caregiver. Not taking care of yourself can compromise not just your health, but your ability to be an effective caregiver. You may find yourself snapping at others, including the person with LBD. You might also get sick easily, lose connections with friends and family, or feel exhausted all the time. It’s important to take the time to look after your own health. See your doctor. Eat a balanced diet. Get enough exercise. And, take time to decompress and spend time with friends and family.
Add Elder Care to Your Team
Having an elder care provider to assist with the care of your aging relative takes a lot of pressure off family caregivers. An elder care provider can do nearly everything that family caregivers can do, including assisting with dressing, toileting, and eating. Eldercare providers can also help with household tasks, such as cleaning and cooking.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Huntley, MT, please contact the caring staff at SYNERGY HomeCare today at 406-839-2390.