Your father may have recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Perhaps you, him, and maybe other people in your family, perhaps even friends of his, had been concerned that he may have been developing some form of dementia.
In most cases people are not diagnosed with Alzheimer’s until they’ve already been dealing with some of the earliest signs and symptoms of this disease for a year or two. Sometimes people can go even longer before they’re diagnosed, but due to the various symptoms, his ability to communicate effectively may have been hampered.
As the disease progresses it may make it difficult for him to express his ideas and if he is trying to communicate and is not completely lucid, you may have difficulty understanding the things he’s trying to say. Don’t just pass it off as being gibberish or some byproduct of the memory loss he’s experiencing; he may be trying to tell you something important.
Learn to listen.
You may have so many things going on throughout the day that it’s essentially nearly impossible for you to sit down and have a conversation with him.
The times you do have a conversation it’s difficult to follow it or keep him focused on what you’re saying. It can be frustrating, but you need to slow yourself down. If you don’t have time because of so many other things going on, consider hiring an elder home care support services to at least help out.
Understand the impact Alzheimer’s is having.
One of the earliest symptoms of this particular disease is using the wrong word. Maybe he was telling you about a doctor’s appointment that was coming up and kept saying ‘repair shop.’ That could have been confusing, especially since he no longer drives. That’s why you need to listen as carefully as possible, slow yourself down, and understand what he’s trying to say at different times.
Rely on experienced care.
One of the best things you can do, not just for yourself, but for him, is to rely on experienced care. An elder home care aide who has worked with other elderly clients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia may have various strategies to help them communicate effectively.
They may also have tips they can share with you and the rest of your family and trying to understand exactly what your father may be saying at different times. Yes, this disease can be difficult to live with, both for the individual and his or her family members, but when you are actively focused on the best care for him, it becomes easier for everyone.