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Memory Loss and the Dementia Diagnosis Page #2  

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                            Dementia and Alzheimer's Caregivers Make the Holidays Wonderful

 Author: Coach Chez Wise


alzheimer's caregiversThe holidays are expected to be a bright and cheerful time, filled with family and friends. For those caring for another it can be a time filled with stress, disappointment, frustration and sadness. For individuals who have been experiencing MCI, Dementia or Alzheimer’s, they may feel even greater distress and a deeper sense of loss. This is caused by the changes he or she has experienced. Caregivers far too often are overwhelmed. Family may want too much from the senior and the caregiver as well. For the Caregiver, they can end up feeling pulled in many directions at the same time. They may want to participate in the holiday hub bub, and spend long periods of time with the other family members or have them to the house. This can be overwhelming physically, emotionally, and financially. Caregivers may be concerned about how family will react to the changes that have happened to the loved one as a result of the advancing of the disease.

Get honest about your family. If they have not been involved all year long, then they do not understand the changes that have occurred. As the primary caregiver, it is up to you to ensure they understand the circumstances surrounding your loved one, and respect that you know what is best for them.

Some simple rules of thumb:

Do not expect that any of your family members understand the changes that have taken place. They may not understand how the loved one will react with the entire family and extended family gathered together. You need to be the one to make sure everyone else understands that Dad or Mom may not be able to participate as they did in the past, and neither can you.

Extremely long drives to the sister that lives 90 miles away may not be feasible. These drives can be physically exhausting, and the strange house may cause unnecessary anxiety and acting out.

Large gatherings with lots of noise, and small children, are difficult. They may not be able to hear well with so many people talking and a lot of noise. This may very well cause your loved one much anxiety and fear.

Your family may not have truly understood that Mom or Dad, may not remember their names, or confuse or forget grandchildren. They may take it personally, and have feelings of hurt and dismay.

About the Author:

Coach Chez is a recovery coach, helping individuals make lasting change in behavior and emotions. Senior Motivate 4 Success helps Seniors and Families find ways to deal with change as we age. Check us out at  Senior Motivate 4 Success and be sure to see our special program for the holidays at Holiday Program

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Additional Information and webpage by Paul Susic MA Licensed Psychologist Ph.D. Candidate                                      

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