This is a quick post to share some information I received at an early-stage Alzheimer’s group meeting I attended at the Center for Brain Health. I believe they have included some really useful information here for those just beginning this journey and their caregivers. The handout lists “Strategies to Maximize Function.” With just a few tweaks to certain activities and ways of doing things, one can maximize function and independence.
- In groups, ask people to speak one at a time
- Ask a conversation partner to slow down or explain something again.
- Reduce distractions and background noise while having a conversation.
- Use gestures or describe the item when having difficulty coming up with the right word.
- Remind conversation partners to give you time to answer.
- Consider telling conversation partners about your difficulties communicating. You can have a card or information sheet to provide in social situations.
- Read information more than once.
- Highlight or bookmark information that you want to look back at later.
- Read shorter material if longer texts become too difficult.
- Have someone read to you, then discuss the information together.
- Consider changing the media – listen to an audio book or watch a video clip from a news website.
- Choose less complicated recipes.
- Cook with a partner – read the recipe together and get help with complicated steps or measurements.
- Split up the steps – ask someone to measure the ingredients so you can mix them.
- Keep a pad of paper with you to write down thoughts you don’t want to forget.
- Consolidate your calendar. Keeping up with calendars in multiple locations can be overwhelming.
- Use a pill planner or have a family member help dispense medications.
- Don’t try to do it ALL yourself! Ask someone to help and split up the duties if keeping track of everything on your own becomes to difficult.
Source: Center for Brain Health