Alzheimer's is a very stressful disease and can easily burn out the caregiver I had a cousin run the full spectrum of the disease and it was an awful sight to witness.
My husbands father was also diagnosed with this disease but he was only in the early stages when cancer took his life.
I love working with my grand-ma's and grand-pa's who have this disease and I have had one of the leading local experts teach me so very much about this disease but it is never easy on the loved ones who face this disease. As one woman wrote, "I feel as if I have lost my mother twice, once to Alzheimer's then to death."
"Alzheimer's caregiving isn't a one-person task — and friends and loved ones may be more willing to help than you'd think. Here's help reaching out.By Mayo Clinic staff
How to share the load
- Be realistic. Alzheimer's caregiving is demanding. There's only so much you can do on your own. Remember that asking for help doesn't make you inadequate or selfish.
- Spread it out. You may worry that no one will be willing to help you, but you won't know until you ask. Although some people may indeed say no, remember that most of your friends and loved ones probably want to help but simply don't know how.
- Suggest specific tasks. Perhaps a neighbor could do some yardwork or pick up your groceries. A relative could sort bills or fill out insurance papers. A friend might take your loved one for a daily walk.
- Consider abilities and interests. If a loved one enjoys cooking, ask him or her to help with meal preparation. A neighbor who likes to drive might be able to provide transportation to doctor appointments. A friend who enjoys books might read aloud to your loved one.
- Be prepared with specific tasks. The next time someone says, "Let me know what I can do to help," offer a few concrete suggestions — or let the helper choose from a list of things that need to be done. That way, the task may be more suited to his or her interests and time constraints.