Anxiety and Worry
| Management Strategies
- Think carefully about your home environment. Are there some common or reoccurring factors which repeatedly result in anxiety? Try to reduce or eliminate noise level, visual clutter or anything that seems to trigger anxious feelings.
- Identify what soothes the person you care for, whether it be music, a drive, a warm bath, or a visit with a pet. Try and integrate these things into their daily routine to help build a comfortable and relaxing environment.
- A regular exercise routine often helps to relieve stressful feelings. If they can to do so, encourage physical activity such as a short walk or dancing.
- The person you care for may benefit from relaxation therapies, such as breathing exercises, calming music or massage.
- The signs of anxiety such as pacing or repetitive questioning may be irritating to the caregiver. If you find yourself unable to cope or unable to sleep, you may need to take yourself out of the environment for a short period of time. This would be in the best interest of yourself and the person you care for. The Alzheimer society in your area will know what respite care is available to you and how to obtain it.
- If the person you care for is anxious about forgetting an appointment or a task, try memory aids such as white boards listing their weekly activities up around the house to remind them. If the person you care for is often worried about a task which has already been completed, include a place on the white board where they can check off an item when complete.
- Talking about overwhelming anxiety with family and friends is common and comforting. Sometimes it is also helpful to share with others by talking to a member of the clergy, psychologist , family doctor , or other counsellor. This helps to provide social support, as well as providing information on ways to best manage the disease. Counselling services are also offered by the Alzheimer Society in your area. Often times, they have early support groups for people who have recently been diagnosed. This can give the person you care for the chance to talk to other people with similar problems, and by sharing their burdens to lessen them.
- Find a distraction for them, give the person you care for something productive to do so they have something to concentrate on other than their worries.