Is your spouse living with Dementia?
Deb Stewart, RN, Memory Support Unit Coordinator
Caring for a spouse who has dementia can be a daunting experience. As a caregiver, you can find yourself struggling with impatience, anger, frustration, and fear. Your spouse is struggling with fear, frustration, anger and forgetfulness. What can you do?That is a loaded question and the answer isn't the same for everyone. The answer certainly can't be found in a paragraph. However, what I can say is; live in the moment. For people living with dementia their days are made up of moments. Do your best to create moments of joy. Find simple pleasures together such as; holding hands, looking at pictures, reading together, doing a simple puzzle, or finding something to laugh about. Even when your day is going really bad, you can find a way to change the moment. Bursting out in song can sometimes alter a frustrating moment, or stepping out in the sunshine and taking a deep breath can help with impatience. As a caregiver you need to let yourself off the hook when things don't go as planned. As for the person living with dementia, the most important thing you can do is to enter their reality, and to validate and acknowledge what they are feeling.