Apathy is a symptom many people do not expect or even know about when it comes to Parkinson’s disease. Described as a lack of motivation, enthusiasm, or interest, apathy can be one of the most disturbing and frustrating effects of this progressive disease, both for your senior and for you as their family caregiver. If your senior is dealing with this symptom, it will be vital for you to not only find ways to deal with it yourself, but also to help them cope with their apathy, and try to move past it. This will help to preserve their quality of life, and even put more into taking care of their health and well-being.
Use these tips to help your senior with Parkinson’s disease deal with apathy:
-Continue to show them they are important and wanted by involving them in plans, inviting them to activities, and encouraging them to stay active. Even if they don’t always want to participate, just knowing they are wanted can make a tremendous difference in how they feel, and how they see the world around them.
-Understand that their lack of motivation and interest impacts their daily activities and personal needs as well as leisure and social activities. Help them to manage these by breaking up their day into smaller, more manageable “chunks” so they can tackle each one on its own. Rather than having a whole schedule in front of them, break the day into sections, such as morning, afternoon, and evening. Then further break this down into what should be accomplished in that time. Finally, break down each activity into smaller pieces so your parent can work through each and get a sense of accomplishment that can keep them going.
-Have your parent choose one leisure, social, or recreational activity to try each week. This can be going on an outing with you, attending an organizational meeting or volunteer opportunity, or trying a new activity. Encourage them to keep this as they would an appointment, and then help them enjoy it as much as possible.
-Continue to emphasize quality time with you. Make sure they know you are not just with them because you are obligated to take care of them. Instead, you love them and want them to be healthy and safe, and enjoy a high quality of life. Even if they don’t seem to respond, or even try to push you away, continuing to show affection and tell your parent you love them will anchor the meaning of your relationship within you.
Caring for an elderly adult with a progressive disease such as Parkinson’s disease poses challenges and difficulties different from those of a senior not dealing with such a disease. Progressive diseases worsen over time, and the person living with the disease will experience more and more serious symptoms and difficulties as they move through the stages of the disease. This means is the family caregiver, or you will be required to modify your care to continue to meet these needs as they change and increase. Because the progression of diseases is highly personal, you never know when or how your senior will change, and how quickly they will progress.
Having elder care as an element of their care from as early as possible in the journey could be extremely valuable for both of you. An elderly home care services provider can help your parent to cope with the challenges they are dealing with now, and also help them to feel more prepared for what they will experience in the next stage. This relieves your stress and helps you to feel more confident your parent will be able to live their highest quality of life as they age and progress through their disease.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care Services in Atlanta, GA, please call the caring staff at Always Care Nursing Service today.
Call for Assistance: (404) 266-8773 or (800) 989-7828
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