Home Helpers is a premier provider of quality non-medical and personal in-home care to the Philadelphia area.

Common Questions About Alzheimer's Related Behavioral Issues

If you’re providing personal care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, then you probably find yourself wondering about the nature of this disease. Continue reading to learn the answers to common questions about behavioral issues that are related to Alzheimer’s.

What behavioral issues are commonly associated with Alzheimer’s?

In the early stages of the disease, it’s common for people with Alzheimer’s to display anxiety, irritability, and symptoms of depression. As the condition progresses, the individual may show other behavioral symptoms, such as anger, aggression, agitation, delusions, hallucinations, restlessness, and verbal or physical outbursts.

What triggers these behavioral issues?

In many cases, a change in environment can cause a person with Alzheimer’s to feel stressed. When this happens, the fear and fatigue that the individual experiences while trying to make sense of his surroundings can trigger changes in his behavior. Some examples of potentially stressful changes include being admitted to a hospital, moving into a new residence, and changing his caregiver arrangements.

Are changes in behavior a reason to see a doctor?

If your loved one with Alzheimer’s suddenly develops changes in behavior, then he should receive a medical evaluation. The reason for this is that, in some cases, it is contributing factors causing the behavioral issues. For example, a medication that he is on may have side effects that influence behavior, or a secondary illness, such a urinary tract or sinus infection, may be causing him to feel irritable.

What can I do to manage these behavioral issues?

Many people find that the changes in behavior are some of the hardest to deal with when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease. To cope, avoid being confrontational with the individual and try to maintain a calm environment. Finally, try to keep him comfortable and allow him to get plenty of rest between activities and events.

Home Helpers specializes in providing in-home elderly care in Philadelphia. To learn about our friendly visit program and Alzheimer’s home care services, please call us today at (215) 334-2600.

Effective Caregiver/Client Communication

When you hire an in-home elderly care provider or a specialized home care aide, communication is the key to building a productive relationship. These strategies will help caregivers and clients come together to fulfill these important roles.

Start with clear expectations. Making assumptions about what a caregiver will do or what a client expects leads to misunderstandings. Clients should be detailed about the kind of help they need, and home care providers should be clear about services that they can and cannot provide. It can be helpful to have regular meetings to discuss how things are going and to make adjustments as needed. Both caregivers and clients should also encourage honest communication and feedback at all times as they work together towards the same goal: quality home care for a person in need.

At Home Helpers, our clients’ needs always come first, and we are committed to building a personalized home care plan to support your family. Find out more about our services, including our Total Care plan and Friendly Visit system in Philadelphia, by calling (215) 334-2600.

Sleep Problems and Solutions for Seniors with Alzheimer's

Sleep problems are common in people with Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to changes to the sleep cycle caused by the disease itself, sleep problems can be exacerbated by depression, certain medications, restless leg syndrome, and sleep apnea. If your loved one is experiencing sleep disturbances, there are things you can do to help. Talk to your loved one’s doctor and specialized home care aide about a strategy for combatting sleep issues. This information will also help you understand the problem and solutions that could work.

Sleep Changes in Alzheimer’s Patients

Although doctors do not understand the reason, the brain changes that occur with Alzheimer’s disease also lead to sleep changes. These changes tend to be more noticeable than the sleep difficulties that arise as part of the aging process. In most cases, sleep problems that occur with Alzheimer’s become worst in the later stages of the disease, but some patients experience them earlier.

There are multiple types of sleep changes that can happen with Alzheimer’s disease. Some people have difficulty staying asleep and wake up multiple times during the night. When they wake, people with Alzheimer’s may become agitated, struggle to be still, wander, and yell. Other people feel excessively sleepy during the day or have a complete reversal of day and night sleep cycles. Sundowning, in which a person with Alzheimer’s becomes markedly agitated in the early evening, is also considered to be a type of disruption to normal sleep cycles.

Treatments for Sleep Changes

Maintaining a regular home care routine, with scheduled meals and bedtimes, can help keep your loved one on track for sleeping. Regular exercise and exposure to morning sun can also help. Reserve the bed for sleep only, not watching TV or doing other activities. If an underlying condition is contributing to sleep problems, get treatment. Your loved one’s doctor may prescribe sleep medications in severe cases.

Our specialized home care aides from Home Helpers make it easier for family caregivers to meet the needs of their loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease. Whether you need rapid care response in Philadelphia for a changing situation or occasional assistance with our Friendly Visit program, we’re to help. Call (215) 334-2600 for more information.

Queen Latifah's Caregiving Story

Becoming a caregiver for a loved one is a transformative experience. Whether your loved one needs occasional help with home care or is completely dependent on caregivers for his or her needs, the journey can be life changing. In this video, hear how caring for her mom with heart failure has changed Queen Latifah.

Queen Latifah describes how providing personal care for her mom has made them closer. She also stresses the importance of caregivers caring for themselves so that they can be there for their loved ones in the ways they really want to be.

At Home Helpers, we make providing home care for your loved on possible with our Flexi-Rest program, Care Check system, and Friendly Visit program in Philadelphia. Find out how we can help your family by calling (215) 334-2600.

Multiple Sclerosis: What You Need to Know After the Diagnosis

Finding out that you or a loved one has multiple sclerosis can be frightening, but learning more about the disease can help you take control. After a diagnosis, there are many things you can do to feel more confident about what the future holds, from educating to yourself to making decisions about specialized home care. When you or someone you love is faced with a multiple sclerosis diagnosis, here is what you need to know.

Education is crucial.

Most people have heard of multiple sclerosis but don’t know the facts until it impacts their lives. Don’t let myths and misinformation about multiple sclerosis—or MS—impact decisions you make about care or assumptions about how the disease will progress. For instance, you may be surprised to learn that most people with MS never need a wheelchair. Ask the doctor to explain the condition in full and for recommendations for outside resources that can provide more information.

Symptoms may be unpredictable.

MS symptoms come and go, and they are not predictable. You can’t determine what will happen with your MS based on the experiences of anyone else, and you can’t know what symptoms will occur in the future based on what you have experience in the past. Fatigue, blurry vision, poor coordination, balance problems, memory issues, and paralysis are all potential MS symptoms that can occur from time to time. Although symptoms are unpredictable, there are known triggers that can cause flare-ups, including sun exposure, stress, and smoking. Avoiding these can help to control symptoms. Because MS is so unpredictable, having a plan for home care ready to implement when necessary is helpful.

Early treatment makes a difference.

Delaying MS treatment can lead to a faster progression of the disease. The doctor can recommend medications that have been show to slow down the progression of MS and reduce the frequency of flare-ups. The longer treatment is delayed, the more likely it is to progress quickly or become severe.

Make Home Helpers part of your MS care plan. We can provide assistance with personal care, rapid care responses when symptom flares occur, and the right level of home care in Philadelphia for your needs. Learn more about our Care Check system and other services by calling (215) 334-2600.

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