Whether it’s enjoying a morning cup of coffee, taking a midday walk or calling your daughter every Friday, personal routines provide a sense of comfort and control. Routines are especially beneficial for older adults with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Adhering to a routine offers predictability and makes life feel less uncertain for seniors living with memory impairment.
There are many benefits to establishing routines for dementia care including:
Alleviates Stress and Anxiety
Routine can help seniors with dementia feel at ease and less overwhelmed. As dementia and Alzheimer’s progress, seniors tend to become increasingly frustrated with their loss of cognitive and physical abilities. Consistency in schedules, such as eating lunch at the same time every day or taking their medications every morning with breakfast, can help them face the day with a greater sense of peace and confidence.
Provides a Sense of Safety and Security
Days that are unscheduled or unpredictable can lead to agitation and fear in individuals with dementia. That is why it is so important for seniors with memory impairment to have consistent daily schedules, caregivers and activities to help them feel comfortable with their surroundings. Even though someone with dementia or Alzheimer’s may not be consciously aware of the routine or even of the passing of time, following a regular routine will help them feel more grounded and secure.
When you help an older adult with dementia regularly practice an activity, whether it’s getting dressed, folding laundry or playing cards, it can help them maintain their functional abilities as the disease gets worse. Similarly, it may also increase their self-esteem and confidence because the senior recognizes that they can perform these activities independently.
Decrease Caregiver Stress
A routine can reduce the strain on caregivers by making the day more organized and predictable. This also lessens the likelihood of challenging behaviors from a senior with dementia and offers more opportunities for positive connections.
When Is It Time for a Memory Care Community?
As dementia or Alzheimer’s progresses, there may come a time that you can no longer play the role of caregiver in your loved one’s life. Fortunately, today’s memory care communities can positively impact your family’s life, offering relief from caregiver burnout as well as a safe, nurturing environment that provides a level of care that is difficult to provide on your own.
So how do you know it is time for your aging parent with dementia to make the move to a memory care community? Here are some telltale signs:
- The many demands of being the caregiver is wearing you down or making you feel resentful.
- Taking care of your loved one with dementia is interfering with work or your relationships with other people.
- Your loved one needs around-the-clock care or is no longer safe at home.
- You do not know how to manage your loved one’s challenging behaviors.
- You struggle to provide routine and consistency in your loved one’s life.
Memory Care at The Heritage of Green Hills
At The Heritage of Green Hills, our team is dedicated to offering a safe and supportive environment where older adults with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia can thrive. Our specially trained staff works with families to create a personalized care plan that honors your loved one’s established routines so that they can continue to confidently do the things they enjoy in a safe, familiar home-like environment. To learn more about memory care or to schedule a tour, contact The Heritage of Green Hills today!