Caregiver Tactics – Staying Connected

Caregivers share different ways they’ve discovered to stay close with their loved one.

Laura, Caregiver for Mother, 8 Years, California:
Sometimes she thinks I’m her mom, and sometimes she knows who I am but she can’t place my  name so we’ve got a new game plan to not remind her about names and just sort of adapt to who she thinks I am, or where she is. Sometimes she’s a child and she’s asking for her mom. Sometimes she’s in a train station waiting to go on a trip.

Judith, Caregiver for Mother, 4 Years, Texas:
There’s sometimes she won’t know my name, but if I say, “Mommy, mommy”, it’s like a cue and she’ll say, “Juju”, and I say, “Okay.”  Find a way to make her laugh.  If she gets in that anger mode, I find a way.

Create a memory-rich environment. Surround your loved one with reminders of happy, successful moments. As the present recedes into the past, providing pictures from earlier years can stimulate conversation.

Wayne, Caregiver for Mother, 9 Years, California:
She knew she was a cheerleader, she remembers all the football players’ names. I’m amazed yet something I asked her 30 seconds prior gone.

Rudy, Caregiver for Mother, 4 Years, Pennsylvania:… my mother started telling her about her high school days in depth about clubs she was in, her being a cheerleader.  A bunch of things I didn’t even know about.  And I guess … and this happened recently … so I’m thinking I need to talk to her about some of the good ole’ days that she’s experienced.

Judith, Caregiver for Mother, 4 Years, Texas:
I can read my mother’s face very well because, no wonder, if I see that frustration coming on her, then I know it’s time to either joke, or walk away, or try to get her to lay down and take a nap.

Share enriching sensory experiences. Music, fragrance, texture, and taste can both calm and energize Alzheimer’s patients.

Find new ways to stay close with your loved one.

Content sponsored by Forest Laboratories, Inc.