A few years ago, a friend of mine went through the loss of his mother due to Alzheimer's Disease. I remember speaking to him after the funeral, and he made a point to mention that while the passing of his mother was the hardest thing he'd ever faced, he was glad his mother had truly outstanding Alzheimer's home care in the months leading to her death. All I could do was smile weakly and give him a hug. Later, though, I really started thinking about what he had said.
Even after going through the worst pain he'd ever experienced in life, my friend had peace of mind knowing that the care his mother received while at home in her final months was invaluable. I finally understood what he meant because I remember the year or so prior to hiring a home care attendant was incredibly tense. My friend and his family seemed at odds about everything that pertained to their mother, and unfortunately, his mother, even though the disease had done a number on her, felt responsible for making life harder for her kids. That revelation alone was devastating to everyone. Unfortunately, that was only the start. Perhaps the hardest thing everyone had to realize was that they couldn't handle the caregiver role.
We remember how our parents were there for us through all of the big events in our life, and we hope to be able to pay them back in some way down the road. Sometimes, though, it's just not that easy or possible. But don't let that break you. Alzheimer's Disease will test everyone's limits, and the last thing you need to do is be crestfallen this early in the game.
If you and your family are trying to decide if Alzheimer's home care is the way to go, think about this:
Accidents and Injuries - Are you starting to see more accidents taking place when you're not around to help? Is the risk of injury, especially its severity, growing day by day?
Wandering - Whether it's while you go buy groceries or during family gatherings, does your loved one wander away? Is the likelihood of this behavior higher when they are alone?
Proper Care Can't Be Given - Are you having to adjust work and school schedules to make your "shift" at your loved one's home? Are you removing yourself from social activities? Do your communications with others only involve other family members about who is going to what appointment?
Symptoms of Alzheimer's Are Getting Worse - We often think of Alzheimer's Disease as an illness that makes you forget, but that's only the tip of the iceberg. As time goes on, even with medication, the disease is taking its toll. At some point, you and your family will just not be able to properly care for your loved one. Are you at this point?
There really is no place like home, which is why when you begin to consider the possibility of hiring a home care attendant, you must consider the tremendous advantages of Alzheimer's home care. We may not know what tomorrow holds for our loved one as they deal with this terrible disease, but what we can do is do our best to find the right people to provide the best care possible for our loved one in an environment that gives them peace of mind.