Does your loved one have Alzheimer’s? Are you a primary caregiver for them? If so, we don’t have to tell you that providing care to someone who is suffering from Alzheimer’s is not an easy feat — in fact, it is an extremely hard endeavor, and it takes time to get used to. You have to get your loved one in and out of bed safely, clothe them, wash them, and feed them — all of which can be difficult tasks, as you are now caring for both yourself and another person.
It is not uncommon for caregivers to become injured during the day-to-day care that they provide their loved one, as lifting, pulling, and catching a falling patient can result in serious injury. In an effort to combat caregiver difficulties and caregiver risk of injury, we have developed mobility assist chairs. Our homecare furniture is designed with the caretaker and patient safety in mind, as assist levers and swivel functions take risky lifts and movements out of the equation. While we have created a homecare chair that is capable of making mealtimes more comfortable, there are an incredible amount of inconveniences, both physical and mental that a caregiver to a loved one with Alzheimer's might experience.
In today’s blog post, your provider of homecare chairs and mobility equipment, HomeCARE Furniture by ComforTek will be discussing a few alternative resources that can potentially benefit you, the caregiver, both mentally and physically.
As we mentioned above, caregiving is not easy — especially if it is your loved one that you have to watch degrade at the hands of Alzheimer's. While you might notice physical strains more than emotional strains from day-to-day activities, you are likely carrying around some emotional weight too. It might even just take you some time alone to realize the emotional stresses that you have been under. But don’t worry, there are resources that can help.
One of the most common emotional strains that occur when you become the primary caregiver for your loved one is stress — and that makes a lot of sense. You have never had the responsibility that you have now, and that can be scary and overwhelming. If you find yourself stressed as a result of the painstaking hours that you provide care, reach out for help. Check out the Alzheimer’s Association’s website to find resources in your community.
While it is common to be emotionally distraught as a result of having to watch your loved one degrade as you care for them, some caregivers find themselves slipping into crippling depression. If you have begun to feel hopeless in your endeavor to care for your loved one, or even if you feel like you don’t have the energy to take care of them, you might be depressed. If you suspect that you are depressed it is important to talk to someone — because you can’t take care of another person when you are struggling to take care of yourself. If you do not want to see a medical professional, there are other resources that you can reach out to. Consider seeking a caregiver support group in your area — talking to other people in your situation might help.
As we stated at the beginning of this blog post, being a caregiver to someone with Alzheimer’s can oftentimes lead to injuries — for both you, the caregiver and your loved one. In an effort to avoid injury we suggest that you utilize, or consider utilizing in the future, some of the resources below.
If your loved one has become a strain on you physically, sometimes all you need is a short break. Some people push themselves to unfair limits and injure themselves as a result of thinking that they don’t need help. Because of this, it is incredibly important for you to not overwork yourself and to instead allow someone to come to your home (even if it is just once a week) and relieve you of your caregiving duties — allowing you to get even just a couple of hours outside of the house.
Utilize Mobility Tools
Don’t think that just because you are a healthy person that you can take on all of the physical stresses associated with providing care to someone with Alzheimer’s. Instead, utilize tools that have been developed specifically to help caregivers, as well as to prevent caregiver injury. Below we have compiled a short list of some of the various tools that help Alzheimer’s care providers make day-to-day activities easier.
Railings - One of the most efficient ways to help your loved one move around your home is to install railings in hallways and stairways. Stairways require strong railings to allow for both you and your loved one to hold on to in case there is a stumble. Always, on the other hand, require railings because of the spatial issues that you loved one has developed as a result of their Alzheimer’s.
Ramps - Even if your loved one is not yet limited to a wheelchair, they may still benefit from the use of a wheelchair ramp. Installing a ramp on the front porch or on short internal staircases, not only will you increase your loved one’s ability to walk, but you will also minimize the tripping and falling hazards presented by walking up stairs.
Mobility Assist Chairs - While yes, we are a little biased by bringing up homecare chairs such as our own, but you really can’t talk about mobility assistance tools without talking about homecare furniture — after all, most falls that are experienced by Alzheimer’s patients occur when they are trying to be seated, or stood up from a chair. Mobility assist chairs are designed to minimize the risk of injury for both the caregiver and their loved one.
Let Our Homecare Furnishings Company Help You
At HomeCARE Furniture by ComforTek, we truly care about you and your loved one — that’s why it is in our name. In fact, unlike most mobility chair manufacturers, we specially design our chairs for Alzheimer’s patients, but with the caregiver in mind. After all, the mobility assist lever is to help YOU move the chair forward, the multi-locking swivel function is to help YOU turn your loved one around when seated, and our entire line of mobility assistance chairs are designed to keep YOU safe from injury — all while ensuring that your loved one is both safe and comfortable. We invite you to browse our inventory of mobility equipment ranging from bariatric chairs with wheels to swivel dining room chairs with casters and everything in between.
We hope that this blog post brought to light some of the various tools and resources that you, as a caregiver, have available to you — and we hope you use them. If you have any questions for us about our homecare furniture, please don’t hesitate to contact us today!