When a loved one becomes diagnosed with dementia it’s a shock on the individual and their family. Often times, the management of the changes becomes the responsibility of the caregiver. Families must adjust their lifestyle, routines, and even the way they communicate. This requires an understanding of the abilities of their diagnosed family member. The number of changes can be overwhelming, especially at first. Below, we outline 3 different areas to focus on for a more thoughtful approach.
Establishing productive communication with someone with dementia can be difficult at first. If you keep in mind these approaches you’ll have better luck.
During Verbal Communication
A few years ago I wrote an article about the ‘5 tips to helping loved ones with dementia enjoy the holidays’ for Chicago’s Daily Herald.
This year I figured I’d do a reboot!
Spending time together as a family, especially around the holidays, is priceless. Yet, this can be a challenging season for individuals with Alzheimer's disease, or memory care needs, and their loved ones, but a little preparation can make a big difference! Here are 5 easy, hands-on techniques you can use to enjoy this holiday season together.
Bring a family pet along! This provides a wonderful connection to someone who may not always be able to fully communicate. Furry friends also assist as conversation starters. If a real-life pet is not an option, check out our Companion Pets.
During visits, provide your loved one with an object they can hold to reduce confusion and fear. This can rewire the brain to form new connections and helps ground the person in...
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the inhalation of essential oils to receive limbic support. When you inhale an oil, it travels through your nose, into the olfactory system, and works its way into the limbic system. The limbic system houses your memories and emotions. After you inhale an aroma, your limbic system produces an emotional response, a combination of your previous experiences and the oils specific benefits. For example, if you have fond memories of running around in lavender fields as a child, then inhaling lavender essential oil will elicit happiness and joy for you. In that same aspect, \lavender essential oil is high in linalool, a monoterpene, known for its calming effects. This experience would likely make you feel happy and calm when inhaling lavender.
How to use Aromatherapy
When deciding to use aromatherapy you have a few options of what you can do: