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Tips for a Stress-Free Doctor’s Visit with a Senior with Alzheimer’s Disease

October 20th, 2016

Elder Care in Palm City FL

Elder Care in Palm City FLGoing to the doctor’s office is a frequent reality for many elderly adults. If your aging parent is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease they are likely to visit the doctor even more often than they did prior to their diagnosis. Whether they are visiting for something specifically pertaining to their dementia or another condition, doctor’s visits can seem overwhelming and frightening for your parent. Taking steps to reduce this stress can help your parent to make the most out of their visits and reduce the risk of negative behaviors and health consequences.

Use these tip to help you experience a stress-free doctor’s visit with a senior with Alzheimer’s disease:
• Talk about it in advance. Remember that seniors who are dealing with dementia experience short term memory loss first. This means that even if you have talked about their need to go to the doctor before, you might need to remind them a few times. Talk to them about their need to go to the doctor a regularly in the days leading up to their appointment. This reduces the chances that they will feel like you “sprung” the visit on them.
• Remind them about the doctor. If your parent has multiple doctors that they visit regularly it might be challenging for them to know which one they are going to visit at any given time. Offer them reminders about which doctor they will visit, including telling them their name, where their office is, what type of doctor they are, and even a description of what they look like so that your parent has as much context as possible.
• Bring entertainment. Even a short wait can be stressful and frustrating for an elderly adult who is dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. Bring along entertainment with you that will keep their mind engaged and distracted during their wait in the waiting room and any lulls in the appointment itself. This can include a fidget quilt, puzzle books, or even an adult coloring book and crayons or coloring pencils. Depending on the type of visit, also consider bringing along a snack and water to handle any hunger pangs that might distract your loved one and potentially lead to negative behaviors.

One of the best ways that you can help an elderly adult who is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease experience a higher quality of life as they age in place is to start elder care for them. An elderly home care services provider can evaluate your loved one’s specific needs, challenges, and symptoms of the condition and then create a personalized approach to care, support, assistance, and encouragement tailored to addressing those needs in all facets of their life. This way your parent is able to continue maintaining as much independence as possible and stay active and engaged in the world around them as they progress through their disease. Starting this type of care as early as possible enables your parent to form a relationship with a care provider and establish routines and schedules that work for them. This helps to create a greater sense of control and security, ease anxiety, and keep your parent as confident as possible throughout their later years.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Palm City, FL, contact the caring staff at BrightStar Care of Jupiter. Call today (561) 741-1200.