|Why didn't I think of this sooner?|
Sometimes the simplest things can save much trouble and discord. I've struggled with giving my mom her medicine for some time because she can no longer bend her head back far enough to toss the pills into her mouth from a paper medicine cup as in the past. Putting the meds into her hand doesn't work, because she has arthritis and inevitably drops one or more of the pills on the way to her mouth. If I try to put the pills into her mouth we don't fare much better. A few weeks ago it (finally) occurred to me to put the meds onto a spoon--and this works like a charm for us.
Having her hair washed is not Mom's favorite past-time, to put it mildly. We get by with once a week hair washing by using dry shampoo in between. I'm amazed how well this stuff works--it absorbs oil, fluffs Mom's hair, and smells fresh. And, Mom actually enjoys her nightly hair brushing. You can find the dry shampoo we use here: Batiste Dry Shampoo
Finally, I've started splurging a bit on lotions, gentle hand soap, and body wash for Mom. I order online from Bath and Bodyworks, and always use coupons from Retail-me-not. This has helped me to feel more positive about that daily sponge bath I must now administer to Mom. We have not yet used a no rinse bath soap, but if Mom's fear of water near her face increases we may have to try this.
I hope these things help others. The posts below contain additional information Mom and I have found helpful over our twelve years as caregiver and patient.
A Practical Post - covers everything from medications to mealtimes to products for incontinence.
How We've Managed Thus Far - discusses the importance of a pet and plenty of exposure to daylight; repeats some of the info from A Practical Post.
Helpful Products for a Hard Time - incontinence products.
Caregiving Routines -- discusses the emotional/practical transitions that must occur for patient and caregiver as the patient loses ability to carry out activities of daily living without support.
Bath Day -- written back in 2007, still has some helpful guidelines for bathing a patient in the mid stages of Alzheimer's.
Nifty Gifts -- reviews one of my favorite products, the dementia digital clock.
Scripture for Caregivers -- The most popular blog post I've written, with over 8000 hits, this post includes Biblegateway links to over 60 Scriptures that provide encouragement for caregivers.