Your vibrant and aged aunt is not as vibrant anymore and seems morose and confused. Now that appropriate tests have been conducted, the diagnostic findings confirm that she is suffering from Alzheimer's disease. You were designated in better days to be her power of attorney, and so you've made the decision that the best place for your loved one is right there in your own home. Familiarity with her surroundings is not a given, but it may give her some solace to sleep in her own bed or see family photographs still on the dresser. There are things you can expect to happen when you are rendering at-home care for an elderly relative who has Alzheimer's disease. Alzheimer's disease begins with mild symptoms.
Mild Alzheimer's Disease
Mild Alzheimer's disease in its early stage is marked by evident memory loss that confuses your relative. Not being able to manage simple tasks or organize her day is an agonizing experience. She may find herself trying unsuccessfully to keep her end of a conversation or getting her words out clearly as you try to make her comfortable. Do not be dismayed as you gently coax her to smile even if she does not respond.
Second-Stage Alzheimer's Symptoms
The second stage veers off course without any warning. Your aunt begins having periods of incontinence and not being able to get dressed. She may suddenly not recognize you or anyone else. Wandering about may creep in as a threatening symptom, which then becomes a safety issue. She may even start threatening you and other family members and actually attacking you. Bizarre behavior increases.
This is the most severe stage of the disease, and the demands of caretaking may leave you exhausted. Your aunt will definitely not be able to do anything for herself at this stage. That's why it is so important to plan ahead to have other members of your family pitching in to help you as Alzheimer's disease ravages your loved one's abilities to even speak, walk, or sit without help. She might even refuse to eat because of difficulty in swallowing.
Alzheimer's Care Facility
The day might come when, due to fatigue on your part, you cannot take care of your aunt in your home any longer. Never feel that this is a sign of your weakness, but it will not be an easy decision to make. It's just that the stress in your life pushes you to the point that you can do nothing further for your dear relative. Be assured that once you discuss the issue with other family members and you all search for and choose the best possible Alzheimer's care facility, you'll still be able to visit her in the facility after she transitions to that residence. You'll be ensuring that she receives the best care that she needs in her twilight years.