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“Various studies of memory care caregivers have shown that a high percentage of the them suffer from both physical and emotional exhaustion,” says Sam Streater, Program Director of Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. “In many cases, it is a loving spouse taking care of their husband or wife living with Alzheimer’s disease or other form of dementia.”
According to Sam, “Memory loss can change the social dynamics for the entire family, but its effect on spouses is typically the most dramatic.“
The Alzheimer’s Association article,‘Changes to Your Relationship’ advises that as the disease progresses, your relationship with your spouse or partner with progressive memory loss will change; however, your connection can still be rich and fulfilling. They suggest spending time together in ways that bring you closer and help you relate.
Memory care specialists advise that knowing what to expect and preparing for it is an important coping mechanism for spouses that can help you to deal with the changes ahead most effectively. They say these changes commonly include:
Prepare for these changes by locating and reviewing all essential financial and legal documents, such as life insurance policies, property deeds and retirement accounts, shortly after your spouse is diagnosed.
Memory care experts recommend taking the initiative to contact family and friends. Explain that while Alzheimer's disease has changed your lives in some ways, you still value their friendship, support and continued relationship.
Do not feel guilty if your attraction to your partner has changed. You can find new ways to connect emotionally and remain loving with each other.Hold hands, go for walks together and spend quiet moments with each other.
Experts in memory care at The Mayo Clinic and the Alzheimer’s Association, provide useful tips to help spouses deal with caregiving challenges and have a better relationship with their loved ones. For example:
“It is also important to plan ahead,” Sam states. “At some point, your loved one will need more extensive memory care than you can provide at home. Take some time to evaluate a leading memory care community such as Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr now so that you can be prepared for the future. This will give you peace of mind by knowing that your spouse will always have the quality memory care and socially engaging, purposeful life they deserve.”
“Organizations such asthe Well Spouse Association provide helpful resources for spouses or partners caring for their loved ones with memory loss or other chronic illness.
In addition to being the area’s leading provider of specialized memory care, life enriching activities, and purposeful living, Impressions Memory Care at Bryn Mawr is also a trusted source of information for area families. We invite you to read our articles and tips on a variety of memory care topics including helpful advice for at-home memory care caregivers.
If you have comments or questions about our blog on memory care, we’d love to hear from you. We also encourage you to share any of your caregiving experiences in our comments section.
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 our residents in a caring setting that offers individual suites with large private baths and the comforts of home. Our community touches hearts and changes lives.
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.
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.