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Coping with Holidays as a Caregiver

By Brenda Race
(Page 2 of 2)

Try to limit the number of guests so that the amount of confusion is lessened. Keep in mind that the more noise that is present; the more confusion will be evident. If your holiday activities are planned well in advance, each guest should also be made aware of the emotional state of the one you are caring for. You could even send them material to read giving them an overview of the disease if they are unaware of what it entails. This would also be an excellent opportunity to prepare friends and family for the changes they might see in your loved one, especially if they have not been to visit in some time.

Most importantly, always try to make your loved one feel secure and protected. As much as possible keep your loved one on their regular routine. We all know that just a slight change in routine can cause increased confusion and stress to every one concerned. Your holiday plans will flow a lot smoother if every one is aware of your loved ones needs and limitations. With guests in and out of the house, be sure that someone is aware at all times of where they are. If they tend to wander there is a chance that they may wander off while everyone thinks that everyone else is watching Aunt Mary! It may be a good idea to even assign different ones to take turns keeping him or her in sight. And if your loved one becomes agitated, try to remove them to a quiet area of the house either with yourself or someone they trust. Your loved one could be trying to tell you that they need a break from the activities.

Finally, be sure to fit some time in for yourself this holiday season. If you have the extra people there, then use them to your advantage. Take a few minutes sometime during the day to pamper yourself! Remember this is your holiday too, and do not be afraid to let family know that a little quiet time for yourself could be a gift beyond measure. Place your sister or brother in charge of mom or dad or hubby and go run yourself a hot bubble bath or take a 30-minute much needed nap. Something this simple will refresh you and help you to enjoy the holidays that much more too.

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