Categorized under neurodegenerative disease, dementia is a term used mostly for a group of symptoms that have debilitating effects. The symptoms include loss of memory, deteriorating cognitive behavioral abilities, short attention spans, unable to independently carry out routine activities and tasks, loss of verbal skills, and excessive mood swings along with personality changes. Other symptoms include depression, repetitive behavior patterns, aggression, difficulty in following social cues, and loss of social skills. All these symptoms cause living with dementia quite hard for the affected person as well as for their family and caregivers.
Dementia is a progressive condition. The symptoms only become worse over time. Although there is a complete cure for dementia, there are some ways that make it easy living with dementia. These tips can be useful for a person with dementia as well as for their caretakers.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle is not only essential for living with dementia, but also for overall health. A healthy lifestyle can be maintained by eating well and exercising regularly. As dementia progresses, it adversely affects the eating habits of the person. So, having a nutritious diet is important. Avoid food that has the potential to cause digestive problems and any discomfort. These can affect the mood and aggravate dementia symptoms. A regular exercise routine or a daily physical activity releases endorphin that helps to keep the mood balanced.
Have an active social life
People with dementia slowly start to feel isolated as their symptoms become severe and they start losing their social skills. Also, their caregivers especially if they are family often become disengaged from their social life as all their focus shift entirely to the care of the person with dementia. This can lead to difficulties in coping with dementia. It is essential to reach out to people and engage in social activities. This is one of the best ways for living with dementia. A healthy social life will keep the mind active and stimulated. Joining a support group will provide a lot of help in living with dementia.
Follow sleep hygiene measures
In nearly all cases of dementia, sleep is one of the most affected routines. Living with dementia means living with erratic sleeping patterns. Episodes of disturbed sleep and restlessness are quite common. There are certain medications for dementia that might cause a person to fall asleep during the day and cause sleeplessness during the night. The best way to deal with this is to maintain proper sleep hygiene habits such as no napping during the daytime, proper sleep times, and avoiding caffeine or alcohol at night.
Make an effective coping strategy
Dementia causes a lot of changes in a person’s daily routine. This is mostly because of the slowly deteriorating memory loss. A coping strategy involves making a list of tasks that are no longer easy to do. Reminders can be put around the house to keep you aware of these often-forgotten routines or tasks. Do not hesitate to ask for help to carry out basic tasks that have now become difficult.