As we age, we all begin to become somewhat forgetful. But when a parent is diagnosed with Alzheimer's, talking with them becomes more and more difficult. For some ideas about how to cope with the stress of relating to a parent who has dementia, click on the title above. It will link you to our website and our article, The Sandwich Generation and Their Parents' Tarnished Golden Years. You will learn how to take care of yourself as you cope with your parent's Alzheimer's disease.
Today and tomorrow we will give you some of our tips for communicating with loved ones who are dealing with this slow death. These will help you continue to treat them with respect and preserve their dignity.
Set aside time to talk. Don't rush through the process. Use a quiet tone and stay calm. This will help your parent focus on you and what you are saying.
Look at your loved one. Pay attention to his or her body language. Touch him or her. Holding hands and giving hugs are ways to communicate without using any words. Think about the feelings behind their words and actions.
Use direct, simple, ordinary words. Break down a task into steps and present only one at a time. Demonstrate what you want them to do.
Tune in again tomorrow for some more help in dealing with parents who are slipping away.