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Tips for Caring for a Parent with Dementia

Taking care of an elderly parent who is suffering from dementia can be difficult. It can even be overwhelming. The day-to-day care of your parent can sometimes leave you burned out, and this can impact your ability to care for him or her. If you are planning to care for your parent, here are some tips for providing the help he or she needs.

Discuss Financial and Legal Issues

If your parent is in the early stages of dementia, now is the time to talk about his or her financial and legal issues. As the disease progresses, your parent's cognitive functioning will be impacted, and that will make it almost impossible to get his or her input on business matters.

Your parent might be reluctant to focus on estate planning, but it is important that you stress to him or her that it is necessary. If your parent does not make decisions regarding his or her care, the decision could be made by a third party.

For instance, if your parent does not select a healthcare agent to make medical decisions when he or she is unable to, a judge could choose someone to do it.

Create a Care Plan

Regardless of how devoted you are to your parent, you will eventually need help with some of the responsibilities. For instance, monitoring your parent 24/7 is necessary due to the symptoms of the disease. Without careful monitoring, your parent could wander away from the home.

Take the time to assess your parent's current condition and determine how much help you will need to care for him or her. If the dementia is in the early stages, ask your parent for his or her input on what care is needed.

As the dementia progresses, your parent will need more care. Medical professionals, such as an in-home care aide, can help supervise your parent and even provide help with daily living skills. In addition to receiving help with simple tasks, your parent could possibly receive medical help.

As part of your planning, you should also consider whether or not you should move your parent into an assisted-living facility. Trained professionals can provide the monitoring and care your parent will need. Consider visiting facilities with your parent while he or she can still provide input on the various locations.

Even though caring for a parent with dementia is challenging, there are ways to make it easier. Rely on professionals, such as in-home healthcare aides, to ensure your parent is cared for.

Find out more about such services by visiting the sites of healthcare providers of things such as assisted living.