It is difficult when we are faced with seeing a change in our loved ones, especially when we are used to them being so strong and supporting us. It becomes difficult for us to accept there may be a change in their behaviour, and that they may be getting older and needing some support themselves. We try to convince ourselves that it is just a phase or they may be unwell but will get better and snap out of it soon. Unfortunately coming to terms with the fact that our loved ones are ageing can affect us as much as it affects them. The signs may be there but we sometimes try not see them.
If your elderly relative or friend always took a lot of pride in their appearance but now wears stained clothes or is struggling to put outfits together they could be showing early signs of dementia. Dealing with dementia can be difficult and one of the most difficult aspects of this is personal care. Bathing is a conversation that is discussed a lot at dementia care groups and is often a difficult time for the person suffering with dementia. There are many reasons why they may find bathing difficult such as wanting to keep their modesty, or it may be difficult to get undressed as it may be painful or they could be afraid of falling. Whatever these reasons are it is important to remember to keep calm and try a sponge bath or even wipes as a compromise.
Getting dressed or undressed can also be a very stressful time for both as some people may never have been undressed in front of other people before. They could struggle with buttons and zips and get frustrated with the activity. Helping someone get dressed can be upsetting for them as this is something that is quite often taken for granted and when someone is unable to do it for themselves it can have devastating effects on their mental wellbeing.
Getting outside help can seem a little daunting, where do you go? Who do you ask? Who is going to give the best care? As your relative or friend progresses with dementia the tasks are more demanding and often need that professional help. There is also the time factor, you may have a family of your own to look after or a demanding job. For whatever reason you need help, it is much better for an elderly person to stay in their own home for as long as possible. Familiar surroundings can help settle them when becoming frustrated with activities. We all want to know that we are doing the right thing and getting professional help for some of the time may help both you and your friend or relative.
If you would like more information how we provide care packages for elderly with dementia please contact us in the office on 01978 660423.
Home Instead Wrexham and Deeside