The Ups of a Down: Finding Ways to Cope With Alzheimer’s

When you have Alzheimer’s disease, things that once came very easily to you will in time be increasingly challenging, like managing your household, your finances, and your daily schedule. Some individuals might even try to do all that they can to conceal their difficulties in order to safeguard themselves and their loved ones from embarrassment. But by hiding your difficulties and covering up your mistakes could be extremely stressful. On the other hand, accepting and embracing these changes and learning coping skills could help you better deal with your new normal and even give you a sense of peace and accomplishment. In addition, developing coping strategies could aid you in:

  • Gaining more control over your life;
  • Remaining active and engaged; and
  • Responding to challenges that would help maximize your wellbeing and independence.

How to Create a Coping Strategy

man being comforted by a nurse

You’re probably very aware of the new challenges you’ll be facing because of your disease. But creating your very own strategies to cope with your ever-changing demands does not need to be so complicated. To simplify this process, focus on the following:

  • Write a list of all the tasks that you find more and more difficult to tackle. If you’re not ready to move into a senior living community in Ogden just yet, make your daily life easier by developing a strategy for the tasks that you find most difficult. For instance, if you’re having a hard time keeping track of your medication schedule, but can still remember to do house chores as scheduled, create a plan to help you remember your medication schedule first.
  • Determine which tasks are really necessary. For instance, if you find managing your bills taxing, get someone to help you with it. You just need someone you trust to write out checks and send them out for you and all you have to do is sign them.
  • Find the most workable solution that fits your needs. For instance, if you’re having a harder time cooking meals, consider using a crockpot to simplify the process. You can cook full meals without having to spend as much time and effort.
  • Know when to seek help. Losing their independence is one of the most common concerns of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease. You might feel that you’re losing your independence when you seek help, but while this might appear as a sign of weakness, accepting help from others would actually help you feel more in control and maintain your independence.

Most of all, don’t stress yourself out too much. Accept that certain things will be harder for you to manage and that these are things that you don’t really have any control over. Try focusing on all the great things that you’re still capable of doing. Do note though that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to creating coping strategies and that you may have to modify some of the strategies to fit your changing needs. With this in mind, you need to set realistic goals, but be flexible as your needs change so you can easily tweak your coping strategies when the time comes.

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