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7 Tips for Developing a Dementia Care Support System

Providing for the daily needs of a loved one living with dementia can be an extremely challenging labor of love. In fact, being a dementia caregiver can often be mentally and physically exhausting – even hazardous to your own health. Therefore, it is critical to identify all support resources available to you to create a support system that is part of your overall care plan.

As noted by the dementia care authorities at the Mayo Clinic, “Caring for a family member with Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia might take more strength and patience than you ever imagined. Whether you've been a caregiver for years or you're just learning to cope with the disease, look to friends, family and community resources for support.”

Says Crystal Yost, PCHA, PCH, Administrator at Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr located in Bryn Mawr, PA, “The good news is that there are a variety of support resources available that can reduce some of the stress you experience as a dementia caregiver. National dementia care authorities such as the Alzheimer’s Association and the Mayo Clinic recommend several key support systems that you can utilize as part of your caregiving team.”  


These dementia care support options include:

  1. Family members – Other family members, particularly your siblings, should be your first support option if you’re caring for a loved one with dementia. While you might be the primary caregiver, it’s critical to inform other family members that they need to help support the loved one as well. Other relatives, such as your spouse, children, aunts, uncles and cousins, should also be considered for support if they are available.
  2. Close friends and neighbors – Friends and neighbors with whom you have close relationships can be another valuable source of dementia care support. When asking for their support, always be clear and specific about what you would like them to do. As an example, “Would you please pick up mom’s prescription at the drug store this Wednesday?” Your friends and neighbors are more likely to support you if the task and time commitment are clearly defined for them.
  3. Local support services – Many communities have support services and programs that can help caregivers and the loved ones they care for. Examples include adult day programs, meal delivery services and in-home assistance. The Alzheimer’s Association’s Caregiver Center and Community Resource Finder can help you find the support services near you. Also, local churches, senior centers and government agencies can provide support and information. Take the time to look. You might discover new sources of helpful support.
  4. Hired assistants – If your family and friends are not a viable option and you have the financial resources, consider hiring additional help to be part of your support team. Such help could include house cleaning, assistive care, lawn care, transportation services and household repairs. Ask for references to be sure whoever you’re hiring is competent and trustworthy.
  5. Respite care – Dementia caregivers are very busy and often overburdened and require periodic breaks from the challenges of caregiving. Therefore, it is wise to consider support resources such as the respite care services provided by Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr. Respite care supports caregivers by providing a temporary breather from caregiving, while their loved ones with dementia continue to receive professional care in a safe, compassionate and socially engaging environment. 
  6. Stress management support – As a dementia caregiver, dealing effectively with the increased level of stress in your life is extremely important – both for you and the loved one you are caring for. Therefore, consider these supportive coping strategies to diminish your stress and help you to maintain your physical and emotional health. Also, dementia caregiver support groups can be helpful in learning what other caregivers are using for support systems.
  7. 24/7 memory care services – For dementia caregivers, there eventually comes a time when it is no longer possible to provide your loved one with the level of care and support in the home setting that they require. As a leading dementia care community, Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr provides loved ones with the best in therapeutic programming. compassionate care, consistent staffing and life enrichment. Here, loved ones enjoy comfort, engaging activities, helpful services and amenities that offer a life filled with meaning and purpose.


Crystal adds, “By following these tips, you can expand your foundation of support and provide yourself with more time for the other important aspects of your life. And if and when you need us, we will be there for you as your ultimate means of support.”

We encourage you to contact us with any questions you have on dementia care or to schedule a tour. Also, we invite you to read our timely blog articles on current caregiver and dementia care topics posted on our website.


We Would Love to Hear from You!

If you have comments or questions about our blog, “7 Tips for Developing a Dementia Care Support System,” we’d love to hear from you. We also encourage you to share any of your caregiving experiences in our comments section.


Engaging Days. Meaningful Moments.

Loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease or other memory impairments require specialized care and support. They also deserve a lifestyle rich in dignity and fulfillment. Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr provides residents with Engaging Days and Meaningful Moments that emphasize individual abilities, encourage socialization and promote the highest level of independence possible. We offer a complete continuum of leading-edge programs, services and amenities that address the total physical, emotional and social needs of residents in a caring setting that offers individual suites with large private baths and the comfort of home. Our memory care community touches hearts and changes lives.


Helping Families Be “Family” Again.

Memory loss caused by Alzheimer’s disease, dementia or another form of memory impairment doesn’t only affect the person who has it – it affects the entire family.

If you have a loved one with early- to mid-stage memory loss, you know how challenging it can be to provide the care that’s needed while trying to maintain balance in your life. As care needs increase, you may not be able to meet them physically or emotionally. It’s often difficult to be available to care for your loved one’s health and well-being around the clock.

If and when the time comes to seek additional help, place your trust in Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr. We lift the stresses and worries of being a caregiver from your shoulders, enabling you and your family to enjoy time with your loved one again. 


For more information, please call Crystal at 484.380.5403 or contact us online. 

Disclaimer: The articles and tip sheets on this website are offered by Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr and Main Line Senior Care Alliance for general informational and educational purposes and do not constitute legal or medical advice. For legal or medical advice, please contact your attorney or physician.