Although all seniors need to take certain safety measures, people who have Alzheimer’s disease or other form of dementia can pose some additional safety issues. Here are some things you can do to improve the safety of your Kansas City home for yourself, or as the caregiver a loved one who has Alzheimer’s:

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If you live alone in your Kansas City home and have just been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, you may be wondering what to do next. Here are some strategies that will help you maintain some independence and quality of life:

Do your homework. Find out what Kansas City Alzheimer’s resources are available so you’ll know where to go for health care, educational resources, emotional support, and other needs.

Find transportation. Once you’ve been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, it’s probably not safe for you to continue driving. So you’re going to need to enlist help. If you have friends or relatives nearby, see if they can help drive  you to places you need to go or pick things up for you. You may also be able to use Uber or Lyft for a time, but ask for your doctor’s opinion before booking any rides.

Stay engaged. You may want to let the people who are closest to you know about your illness, so they won’t be alarmed when you become forgetful. But continue to participate in activities you enjoy to the best of your abilities. Staying engaged may help slow the progression of your disease, and will help you live a more fulfilling life.

Invest in technology. There are a lot of technological devices available at Kansas City discount or technology stores that can help you with things like communication, appointment or medication reminders, wandering, and other activities that may become more difficult with time.

Sign a living will and a healthcare power of attorney. A living will lets doctors know what type of health care you do or do not want if you’re unable to make that decision at the time of care. A healthcare power of attorney gives someone you trust permission to make healthcare decisions for you. Ask your Kansas City Alzheimer’s caregiver for the appropriate paperwork.

Enlist help. Staying home by yourself isn’t going to be a long-term option unless you have a full-time caregiver. If not, you can always enlist the help of a Kansas City home care agency that provides both personal care and dementia care services.

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Everything suddenly changes when a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Social interactions become more difficult. Planning a simple Kansas City outing becomes a chore. And there are new safety issues to be dealt with.

Here are some tips that can help if you find yourself living with someone who has Alzheimer’s (or other form of dementia):

Learn to communicate. People who have Alzheimer’s can’t communicate as effectively as they did in the past. For example, they may have a difficult time answering questions about short-term events. But there are still ways you can interact meaningfully with a loved one who has Alzheimer’s. Examples include talking about that new Kansas City restaurant you just tried, keeping sentences short and simple, and singing.

Safeguard your home. Wandering can be a big concern for people who have Alzheimer’s, so you’ll want to take prevention measures. These might include installing locks up high, maintaining a routine, adding alarms, and hiding the car keys. Other safety measures might include removing clutter, tossing cigarettes and lighters, ensuring adequate lighting, locking up guns and medications, and creating wheelchair pathways.

Engage the person in activities. Staying socially engaged is important for people who have Alzheimer’s; but that can be difficult because they can’t participate in the same types of activities they may have enjoyed in the past. Try things like listening to music, reading together, simple craft activities, jigsaw puzzles, or looking at old photos.

Learn to manage aggression. Aggression is common in people with Alzheimer’s; but keep in mind it often stems from frustration, confusion, too much stimulation, or unmet needs. To manage aggression effectively, speak calmly and listen to what your loved one is saying. You can also try moving to a quiet location, asking about pain, and changing the subject.

Find respite. Caregivers need a break once in a while. Enlist the help of an organization that provides respite care services or a Kansas City adult day care facility. Respite services are not only good for you, as a caregiver; interacting with others can also be good for your loved one who has Alzheimer’s.

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Caring for someone who has Alzheimer’s disease or other form of dementia is more than a full-time job. It’s 24 hours a day, every day of the week. That’s not a pace anyone can maintain for long.

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Whether you’re in a situation where you still have to go to work every day, or you just need some part-time respite, you may decide you’d like some assistance with your role as caring for a person who has Alzheimer’s (or other form of dementia). Adult day care services from Thoughtful Care specialize in caring for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

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Kansas City winters can be really cold. Add in some snow and ice, and you’ve got potentially dangerous new obstacles for someone who has Alzheimer’s. As a caregiver, you’ll want to do all you can to ensure you’re loved one with dementia stays safe. Here are some winter safety tips:

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Did you make any New Year’s resolutions this year? If you’re living in Kansas City and caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, we’ve developed a potential list for you that may make your life a little easier. Here are some ideas:

  1. Improve your communication skills. It can be difficult to communicate with someone who has Alzheimer’s or other form of dementia. But you can learn to have meaningful conversations with your loved one with these communication tips.
  2. Plan inclusive activities. There are lots of activities you can do that can include someone with Alzheimer’s. For example, you can listen to music, take a walk through a Kansas City Park, or look at old photos.
  3. Discourage wandering. The thought of your loved one who has Alzheimer’s wandering around Kansas City alone can be terrifying. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to discourage or prevent wandering, which can help put your mind at ease.
  4. Learn to deal with aggressive behavior. People who have Alzheimer’s can become agitated or aggressive because they’re in pain, confused, overstimulated, or tired (or for a number of other reasons). Learning how to prevent or deal with aggressive behavior can ensure a more peaceful household.
  5. Embrace technology. There have been vast improvements in technology over the last several years that can help you and your loved one lead better lives. Many of them can be found in Kansas City department or technology stores. Some examples include communication aids, motion sensors, and GPS tracking devices.
  6. Take a break. All caregivers need respite in order to rejuvenate and avoid burnout. And respite care services will not only help you, as a caregiver; interaction with others can also be good for the person with Alzheimer’s.