The Alzheimer's Alliance offers a vast variety of resources to caregivers at no cost to our families. We have a resource library full of books, pamphlets, DVDs and other educational materials and resources on caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's disease and other related dementias. We are constantly updating our in house resource library to offer the best resources possible for our families, please contact us or come by our office for more information on in-house resources.
Caregiver Information Sheets
We love these resources from the National Institute on Aging and have a large selection of printed caregiver sheets in our in-house resource center. If you aren't able to make it in, we've linked a few of our favorites below!
Caregiver's Corner is a place for caregivers to come for tips on caring for loved ones.
Common Dementia Behaviors & How to react
Dementia, Alzheimer’s disease specifically, causes deterioration of the brain directly causing the affected person to lose cognition as the disease progresses. During this process, the personality of the affected person changes drastically, morphing into a person that is almost unrecognizable. The important thing to remember in these situations is that these behaviors are NOT on purpose. Your loved one is not acting out for attention, they are ill. Below is a list of common Alzheimer’s behaviors and ways to react and redirect their actions.
1. Aggression and Anger– The first step in combating aggression and anger is to identify the source. These behaviors are typically caused by physical or emotional distress. It is so important to remember that the disease causes these behaviors, your loved one is not acting out. If you cannot identify the source, try redirecting their attention to something they enjoy, like ice cream or a magazine that interests them.
2. Repetitive behaviors– the memory problems associated with Alzheimer’s disease can lead to repetitive behaviors like repeating words or actions, problems with familiar places and confusion with the passage of time. It is important to remember that correcting them will not help, instead, redirect their attention to something else. Caregiving is all about picking your battles wisely.
3. Sleeplessness – Sleeplessness and night time problems are a common occurrence in Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Health professionals suggest a strict routine throughout the day to cut down on problems at night. Limited sugar and caffeine intake and preventing or limiting the time of naps during the day can attribute to a good nights rest for your loved one.
4. Wandering– People with Alzheimer’s and dementia wander for many reasons, including feeling lost and confused. Other causes can be too much stimulation in their current environment, like too much noise, curiosity and boredom, as well as side effects from medication. While it is almost impossible to cut wandering out completely, there are a few things you can do to create a safer environment. If you suspect the person is bored give them an activity or something to do, like fold towels. Childproof doorknobs or latches at the top of the door can help if wandering away from home is a problem.