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Independence | Management Strategies

  1. It is helpful to offer alternative means of transportation so that the person you care for does not feel like they have lost their independence. Have family members and friends that the person you care for can call for a drive, have taxi service numbers posted by the phone or look into transportation services for older adults. Make sure that the person is aware that need not feel isolated or trapped because they can no longer drive.

  2. Try and find ways to make the eating process easier, such as utensils with easy grip-handles, non slip mats, bowls instead of plates or cups with lids. This will help the person you care for from getting frustrated, tired or giving up. Additionally, by making it easier to eat by themselves, you will improve their feelings of independence and self-esteem.

  3. Ensure that there is part of the meal preparation that the Alzheimer's disease patient can do. For example, if you are preparing stew, let them peel the carrots and potatoes. If the person you care for is not capable of truly participating in a helpful way, you can give them an occupying task to do at the kitchen table. If the person you care for feels that they are involved and being helpful, this will help to improve their feelings of confidence and self worth.

  4. The person you care for may be able to perform tasks but at a much slower pace. It is not a good idea to rush the proceedings, or try to complete the task for them. Rushing can increase their frustration as well as your own, and allowing them to participate can encourage independence and dignity.

  5. It may be helpful to give the person you care for tasks that they are able to complete unassisted at certain times. This will give them a feeling of independence and make them feel that they are being of assistance.

  6. Adult day care , if available and affordable, will not alleviate symptoms but will give you - the caregiver -a break.

  7. It may be helpful to create an established schedule of activities to improve consistency and routine for the person you care for. A whiteboard listing the day, date, and planned activities or appointments will help the person you care for understand their day.

  8. If shadowing is a problem with the person you care for, make sure you reassure them where you are and what you are doing. If the person you care for will forget if you leave the house, leave a note detailing where you are and when you will be back. Also plan activities that you can do together such as peeling vegetables or drying the dishes to establish a trusting relationship.

  9. Label cupboards, or replace the door with a see through panel so the person you care for doesn't have to rummage throgh drawers to find what they need.

See Also:
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Operating Gadgets/Appliances
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Personal Care/Hygiene
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Financial Management
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Shopping
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Household Chores
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Meal Preparation/Cooking
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Eating
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Bathing
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Unsafe Actions
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Low Self Esteem
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Memory
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Self-Awareness
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Last updated January 13, 2019
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