Five years ago my father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. At the time, we didn’t really know much about this disease. You could say that we were just like most people in this country. It is common for people to not know much about certain diseases and ailments that affect people until it directly affects them or somebody they care about.
For my family, we decided to try and provide Alzheimer’s care for my father ourselves. We thought that by maintaining this in the family, it would be better for him over the long term aspect of this disease. We understood that there is no cure and that his life expectancy would be between 8 to 10 years from the time he was diagnosed.
At first, things were okay. There were moments where he would get frustrated because he couldn’t remember something that he absolutely was convinced he should know. He had difficulty with language at times, using the wrong word when he meant something else, but these are minor issues for us. We simply ignored them.
However, recently he has begun to act violently and we are thinking it is time for professional Alzheimer’s care.
The more research I have done, the more I have learned that this behavior is sometimes a common symptom of Alzheimer’s because the patient is experiencing an intense level of anxiety and confusion. I mean, if you were to wake up one day, knowing that you should recognize a person who is in your home, but not being able to place their name accurately to them, that alone can be frustrating.
When you take into consideration the fact that there could be many memories that our father is missing, especially knowing that he should recognize people for things that happen in his life, it’s understandable that he can become frustrated easily.
For him, a common theme throughout his life was to become violently angry, smashing things and throwing things around when he was upset. He never hit anybody, but with the changes that he’s going through, we’re not so sure that this won’t continue.
We spoke to a few home care agencies that had experienced caregivers who would be able to work with him and deal with his Alzheimer’s symptoms.
Professional, experienced Alzheimer’s care providers are essential for those who are moving into the latter stages of the disease, where memory loss becomes more significant.