by Larea Hathaway
Currently there are approximately 5.3 million people living in the United States with Alzheimer's Disease. 87% of these people are living at home with their family. I have often wondered how many of these caregivers have the information they need to provide the best care possible for their loved one. Do they know how to make their home safe for their loved one?
The role of a caregiver for a family member with Alzheimer's Disease in the home can be very difficult. Alzheimer's safety is a concern for everyone who lives with someone with this disease. Keeping your family member safe can be very challenging and your challenges will change as the disease progresses. The safer you make your environment the less stressful your life will be. Learning everything you can about Alzheimer's safety is the first step towards keeping your family member with Alzheimer's Disease safe.
There are so many different areas to worry about with Alzheimer's safety. It is not difficult to create a safe environment in your home. It just takes a little time and guidance. Alzheimer's kitchen safety is a very serious issue. The kitchen is probably the most dangerous room in the house for someone with Alzheimer's Disease. Many of the appliances we use daily are potential weapons in the hands of someone with this disease. Prevention is the number one way to prevent accidents. You have to think ahead with "what ifs". An example would be "what if she tries to wash the toaster while it is plugged in"?
Alzheimer's bathroom safety is a priority for all homes with someone with Alzheimer's Disease living in them. Many preventable accidents have happened in bathrooms. It is not difficult or very expensive to make your bathroom a safer room. Caregivers just need to know the dangers to look for and how to fix them.
People with this disease are also at a high risk for falling. As the disease progresses the higher their risk becomes. They will have difficulty walking. Their sense of balance will deteriorate. They will have difficulty maneuvering around furniture or other obstacles. Transferring from bed to chair or just standing up from a chair will become more difficult as time goes on. There are many things that can be done in the home to help prevent falls.
Alzheimer's wandering is another area of concern for family members. Alzheimer's wandering is the term for when someone with Alzheimer's Disease keeps walking around aimlessly. Some people will just walk continuously, until they wear themselves out. Three out of four people with this disease will wander at some point. Alzheimer's wandering is really not much of a problem unless they are trying to get outside. It is very dangerous for someone with Alzheimer's Disease to be outside alone. Alzheimer's wandering is probably the biggest worry for most caregivers.
Most Alzheimer's Disease caregivers worry constantly about the safety of their family member. The safer you can make your environment, the less stressful your life will be.
I have been a registered nurse for 15 years and I have provided care for many patients with Alzheimer's Disease. Several years ago I realized the caregivers of these patients needed my help as well as the patient. I created a website to help provide Alzheimer's caregivers with the knowledge and tips I have gathered over the years. I created an Alzheimer's Checklist which can be printed and used to make the home safer. If you are taking care of a family member in your home or know someone who is, please print the list and check every room in the house.
The Alzheimer's Home Safety Checklist can be found at http://www.alzheimers-in-your-home.com/home-safety-checklist.html
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