When a loved one begins to exhibit signs of memory loss, it can cause a panic to move through family members, questioning if their loved one is safe to live on his or her own. Wondering what you can do to help your loved one deal with memory loss? Let us go over some tips.
Speaking with your loved one’s physician can be a good starting place. You want to make sure that the physician is aware of the signs of memory loss you have been seeing, and to have the physician examine your loved one to help assure cognition is at a state where independent living may still be possible.
Once you have a plan with your loved one’s medical team, try implementing these strategies for memory support. Consider the purchase of an electronic pill dispenser and offer to fill it. This assistive technology dispenses pills only when it is time to take them, to prevent someone from taking too many. There may also be tracking bracelets, which can be linked to your phone, should a loved one get lost. Consider purchasing a large calendar for keeping track of appointments or writing a schedule to check throughout the day. Bear in mind, people experiencing memory loss may be acutely aware of having memory issues. This can be very scary and can cause them to act defensively. A physician can be an excellent resource for suggesting assistive devices.
An often overlooked, but exceedingly important issue surrounding memory loss may be estate planning. At the first signs of memory loss, it may be a wise idea to meet with an estate planning attorney. Once a stage of decreased mental capacity has been reached it may be too late to execute such documents, which can lead to a complicated and expensive legal process.
The saying, it takes a village, can easily apply to dealing with memory loss. Be sure to include family, friends, and neighbors of the person with memory loss to assist in checking in on him or her. Coordinate a short and long-term plan of care with his or her medical team and involve an estate planning attorney to assist with creating an estate plan.
Our office is available to assist you and your loved one struggling with memory loss. We can put a strong estate plan in place for him or her and discuss long term care planning options as well. Please feel free to reach out to us to schedule an appointment.