As the Baby Boomer generation approaches retirement, the need for specialized health care services continues to emerge. Now, more than ever, families are faced with difficult decisions when it comes to choosing the best care options for their aging family members.
Currently, one of the most prevalent concerns is the growing rate of Dementia and Alzheimer’s diagnoses among our aging population. Living with a loved one who suffers from this illness, poses new and unfamiliar challenges for family members, especially when it comes to managing their difficult behaviours.
What is Dementia? “Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life. Memory loss is an example. Alzheimer's is the most common type of dementia. “1
Behavioural Warning Signs2 to Look For: The Alzheimer's Society of Canada has developed the following list of signs to look for:
Wandering - Walks away from home unattended with the risk of becoming lost
Restlessness - Paces nervously, drums fingers, etc. for long periods of time
Repeated actions - Repeats words or actions over and over and over again
Suspicion - Thinks others are trying to hurt them, accuses others of stealing possessions
Sexual behaviour - Removing clothes/exposing themselves , physical and verbal advances towards others
Aggression - Physical and emotional outbursts (i.e., shouting, hitting)
Caring for a loved one can prove to be challenging in addition to life’s daily stressors. Due to the growing number of individuals faced with Dementia and/or Alzheimer’s, long-term care facilities may only be able to provide limited resources and support for families.
With an increased need for support, there may not enough facilities with qualified personnel to support the growing number of individuals living with Dementia and/or Alzheimer’s. Families are now opting to utilize community based services, such as a Senior Care Support Team.
Senior Care Support providers are experienced professionals who can support you and your affected loved one through various stages of this disease, utilizing psychosocial tools to create a positive, motivating and safe environment. They support families in establishing dietary, physical and social routines to promote an optimal level of the individual’s independence and function.
Solus Support Services - Senior Care Team can assist and support you and your loved one
Ensure consistency with familiar faces to allow the establishment of routine and recognition in daily activities
Stimulate cognition & functioning through daily routine
Re-develop and maintain independence through behavioral therapy
Improve sleep quality through maintaining daily exercise and community outings
Decrease chances of other psychological disorders such as depression through social interaction, reduce feelings of loneliness
It is important to recognize that the person is not responsible for their changes in their behaviour. The environment surrounding them, including family members must adapt their own behaviours and responses including our behaviors to successfully support the individual with dementia. Building a safe and positive environment is important to make most of a difficult situation.
Speak to a professional for more information.
Contributor: Emily Evora - Coordinator of Services - Solus Support Services 206 Locke Street South Hamilton, ON L8P 4B4 www.solussupportservices.com
Emily Evora is a Coordinator of Services with Solus Support, specializing in Senior Care Management. Emily’s compassion and dedication has led her to develop specialized skills in human services, crisis intervention, home management, and behaviour programming. She has extensive experience working with elderly and the aging population. Emily is a passionate practitioner who has built strong relationships with the communities she serves; she is a values-driven professional who strives to meet the individual needs of each client. For further information on support services for your loved one, contact Emily: Cell: 1-416-417-2730 or Office: 1-416-824-6201 ; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org;